If low-cost wearable market leader Fitbit didn’t buy Pebble’s “assets” to help it build higher-end new hardware, the smartwatch pioneer’s know-how should at least be used on the software of the parent company’s first full-fledged Apple Watch contender. Right?
Technically, yes, but reportedly, this upcoming Blaze lookalike with standalone GPS, professional waterproofing, an extra-bright color display, NFC-powered wrist payments and other “smart” features has encountered issues integrating third-party apps.
That’s in addition to a problematic GPS module which needed a total overhaul from an early pre-release version, and difficulties getting the as-yet unnamed Fitbit smartwatch to properly resist water immersion. Together, these “challenges” prompted a delay until sometime in the fall after a commercial launch initially planned for this spring.
But Fitbit’s very own app store may not be ready for primetime five or six months from now either, and with Android Wear support out of the question, the Blaze’s bigger, better, pricier brother will find it hard to compete against many fancy products capable of accessing their personal Google Play shops.
Of course, some apps will be supported, though if Fitbit indeed “resorts to building them internally”, we wouldn’t expect a particularly large “ecosystem.” And while the core fanbase may not mind that too much, we’re guessing the whole point of the project was to recruit new users and convince early Apple Watch adopters to switch.