Google’s Fitbit takeover approved by EU
Google’s takeover of Fitbit has been approved by the European Commission, following a four-month investigation.
The search giant bought the fitness tracking company for $2.1bn (£1.5bn) in November 2019 – but the EU warned the acquisition could harm competition.
Google has made a series of pledges to address investigators’ concerns.
Commission executive vice-president Margarethe Vestager said the deal would keep the wearables market “open and competitive”.
The European Commission had expressed concerns Google would:
- use the tranche of Fitbit data for targeted advertising, making it harder for rivals to compete
- exclude third parties from the Fitbit platform
- disadvantage rival wearable device-makers by degrading their compatibility with Google’s Android smartphone operating system
Google has now promised:
- not to use health, fitness and location data from Fitbit devices for advertising, for users in the European Economic Area
- to store Fitbit data in a “silo”, kept separate from any other data used for advertising
- to maintain third-party access to the Fitbit platform
- not to degrade the user experience of third-party smartwatches when paired with an Android phone
The commitments must be kept for 10 years.
Published at Thu, 17 Dec 2020 14:40:29 +0000