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28 October 2019 18:39

Google's parent company Alphabet is in talks to buy fitness-smartwatch maker Fitbit, according to Reuters.

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Google's parent company Alphabet has reportedly made a bid for Fitbit, causing the troubled activity tracker company's shares to skyrocket. Fitbit's shares soared more than 25pc on Monday after Reuters reported that Alphabet had made an offer to buy the company. Trading was briefly suspended after the dramatic leap. If Alphabet bought the company it would help Google compete with Apple, which has the second largest share of the wrist-worn wearable tech market according to tech researcher IDC. Fitbit announced that it was looking for a buyer earlier this year, after four years of decline following a disastrous public listing in 2015.

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Its share price has dwindled from almost $50 at its peak to just $4 a day before reports of Google's potential acquisition. An increasingly crowded wearable market, largely dominated by Apple, and lack of feature innovation has failed to inspire consumers to come back for new versions of its devices each year. Shipments of wrist-worn technology such as smartwatches and fitness trackers have increased this year and annual sales are tipped to hit 152.7m devices this year, a 22pc increase from 2018, according to IDC. Fitbit sold 3.5m devices in the second quarter of 2019, up from 2.6m a year earlier, but has been overtaken by Xiaomi, Apple and Huawei. Google parent Alphabet is reportedly in discussions to acquire fitness smartwatch maker Fitbit, according to Reuters.

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Google is said to have made an offer, but the terms were not disclosed in the report. Acquiring Fitbit would give Google a stronger presence in the wearable technology market, enabling it to grow its portfolio of homegrown products. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Google's parent company Alphabet is in talks to buy fitness-smartwatch maker Fitbit, according to Reuters. Google has reportedly made Fitbit an acquisition offer. The terms of the deal were not mentioned, and it's unclear if the negotiations will result in a deal, the report says. Such a deal would give Google a foothold in the smartwatch space, an industry that the search giant has struggled to break into thus far. While Google has worked with companies like LG on smartwatches that run on its software, it hasn't established a strong presence in the wearables space through its own homegrown products. Google has made a significant push into developing its own hardware in recent years through its Pixel-branded products, and adding Fitbit to its portfolio would likely further those efforts. Representatives for Fitbit and Google did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment. This story is developing. Please refresh for the latest. Get the latest Fitbit stock price here.

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