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Fitbit takes a hit on smartwatch launch

Wednesday, January 06, 2016 - 01:13

Fitbit shares began trading at an all time low on Wednesday after its new smartwatch, launched at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vagas, sent stock down over 18 percent. David Pollard reports

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Fitbit first flexed its muscles on Wall Street with its IPO in June. Its shares sprinting from a debut of 20 dollars to over double that by early August. Those shares now, though, taking a major stumble. Down four cent just hours into a second day of selloff, after a giddy 18 per cent slide on Tuesday. Seen as a sector leader for wearable tech, Fitbit has, it appears, disappointed with its new smartwatch. Analysts worried it might not be good enough to take on rivals like Apple. It looks competitive - with a $199 tag, around half the price of some cheaper Apple models. Battery backup is claimed at five days as opposed to 18 hours for the Apple model. But one analyst is quoted as saying the price could still be too high for a device that doesn't offer access to third-party apps found on others, like Facebook or payment systems. The market for fitness devices has been exploding - expected to grow from about 15 million units in 2014 to 52 million in 2019, according to research firm IDC. But that means lots of competition. As well as Apple, Fitbit also faces rivals like Garmin, Jawbone and Misfit.

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Fitbit takes a hit on smartwatch launch

Wednesday, January 06, 2016 - 01:13