Google’s Fitbit acquisition gets EU approval with 10-year commitments

 

 

 

Google has almost completed its acquisition of Fitbit as the European Commission has approved of its takeover of Fitbit.

Google has agreed to several concessions to ease concerns of the EU. Some of these include not to use Fitbit data, including its GPS and health data, of users in the European Economic Area (EEA) for targeted advertisements. The tech giant has to maintain a technical separation between its business and that of Fitbit’s. It has to give EEA users the option to approve or deny the use of Fitness health data on other Google services including Google Maps or its search engine.

The deal also stipulates that Google must maintain commitments related to both Fit Bit’s Web API as well as its own Android API that foster competition. These commitments have to remain in place for 10 years.

“We can approve the proposed acquisition of Fitbit by Google because the commitments will ensure that the market for wearables and the nascent digital health space will remain open and competitive,” sad Margrethe Vestager, the European Commission Executive Vice President  in a statement. “The commitments will determine how Google can use the data collected for ad purposes, how interoperability between competing wearables and Android will be safeguarded and how users can continue to share health and fitness data, if they choose to.

Ruth Porat, the Chief Financial officer of Google parent company Alphabet had said that she was expecting that the company would acquire Fitbit by the end of the year.

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