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EU to reportedly launch antitrust investigation on Google's Fitbit acquisition

In November of last year, Google formally announced its acquisition of Fitbit, manufacturer of popular fitness trackers and smartwatches, including the Fitbit Versa family. The acquisition, worth $2.1 billion, had the goal of bolstering Google's efforts in the wearable space, specifically its Wear OS platform, though Fitbit has since launched new products that still run its own software.

Now, it seems like the acquisition may face some challenges from European regulators, as reported by Reuters. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the report claims that the European Commission may launch an antitrust probe into the acquisition as soon as next week, on August 4. Once the investigation is launched, the Commission will have four months to investigate the terms of the deal, with a focus on Google's use of health data from Fitbit users.

According to the report, Google had already promised earlier in the month that it wouldn't use Fitbit's data for targeted advertising in order to alleviate concerns from regulators, but seemingly that wasn't enough. In response to the report, the Mountain View giant reiterated that its interest is in combining its hardware efforts with Fitbit's:

“The wearables space is crowded, and we believe the combination of Google and Fitbit’s hardware efforts will increase competition in the sector, benefiting consumers and making the next generation of devices better and more affordable."

The investigation has yet to be announced, but if it does happen, it could hamper Google's efforts to put out its own Wear OS devices in the coming months.

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