- Google’s acquisition of Fitbit for $2.1 billion is increasingly subject to strict scrutiny by the EU Security number.
- Google’s acquisition of Fitbit faces deeper security of data issues by European regulators.
- How will Google process data about your fitness activities and sleep patterns?
Earlier this month, it appears that Google’s acquisition of Fitbit is facing stricter EU scrutiny. A new report today said that if Google formally promises not to use Fitbit health data for advertising purposes, European regulators will give up.
According to the British “Financial Times” report, European regulators mainly focus on Fitbit and its data to enhance Google’s leading position in the field of search and advertising. The European Union has questioned the competitors of the two companies as to whether the transaction will “harm competition” or “not conducive to other fitness tracking apps in the Google Play store.”
The acquisition of Google Fitbit is facing strict scrutiny by EU policymakers. However, Reuters reported this morning that it is said that these policymakers are also ready to allow Google to easily obtain approval: just make sure not to use any Fitbit data for ad targeting.
Google said last year: “Fitbit’s health data will not be used for Google advertising.”
Fitbit will join the hardware team made by Google, but cooperation with other departments is also very extensive.
It promises to be transparent about the types of data collected and explain why. Existing Fitbit users will get the “option to view, move, or delete their data”.
The European Commission, which was originally scheduled to make a decision on July 20, declined to comment on the news.
Before EU regulators decided whether to approve the deal, Google was acquiring Fitbit for $2.1 billion.
At the same time, European regulators have also asked: “competitors to evaluate the impact of the transaction on Google’s growing digital medical business.”
Last year, Google Health was established to put the company’s various tasks as a leader. This includes the use of AI to better diagnose diseases, research to provide smarter tools for healthcare providers, and consumer-oriented efforts (such as Google Fit).]
European regulators have investigated competitors to understand whether the acquisition will harm the market and how Fitbit has benefited Google’s thriving Health department.
Since the $2.1 billion transactions are still in progress, Google and Fitbit have not yet specified any joint plans. However, we found signs that Fitbit is using Google Assistant for its Versa 2 smartwatch.
This will complement Amazon Alexa and is a quick way to mark ownership transfers.
The Financial Times in the UK has learned (via The Verge) that officials have sent questionnaires to Google and Fitbit competitors to assess the impact of the transaction on their business.
The European Union wants to know that this acquisition may damage the fitness tracking app in the Play Store, how Google uses Fitbit data to describe advertising users, and how this acquisition affects the digital healthcare industry.
Google made some concessions to alleviate these concerns. Last year it stated that “Fitbit’s health data will not be used for Google advertising.”
The company responded to a letter from consumer groups saying the transaction was “about devices, not data.” And added that the wearable device field is “very crowded”, the acquisition of Fitbit will only increase competition.
According to data from IDC analysts, Fitbit is less than 5% of the wearable device market in 2019, while Apple, the largest player, accounts for 32%.
The next two largest companies, Xiaomi and Samsung, have 12% and 9% market share, respectively. None of these companies use Google’s software in wearables.
However, considering Google’s strong position in online advertising, concerns about data access may be more persuasive because Google controls 90% of the market in certain tools (such as those used by publishers to sell display ads).
At the moment, this is a sensitive area for Google, as the US Department of Justice is about to conduct an antitrust investigation of companies suspected of misusing their advertising advantages.