The Apple Watch pre-sale was as popular as analysts anticipated, and units will soon hit the shelves of your local Apple Store. So the question on many American’s minds is: Is this this beginning of the end for Fitbit? The answer may not be so simple.
Fitbit is still the number one selling wearable manufacturer in the world, accounting for 70 percent of all industry sales, which is unlikely to change in the near term. According to Jiff CEO, Derek Newell, “Apple is not a category killer…If so, you would’ve seen products like Fitbit go away when Apple iPhone began offering tracking. [But] Fitbit, Jawbone, and other wearables are doing better than ever.” Case and point, Fitbit filed for IPO last week and announced $750MM in sales in 2014, up 144 percent, year-over-year. One explanation is Fitbit’s continued effort to upgrade their product offerings, skewing product sales toward their $100+ models, and leveraging higher margin distribution channels.
Arguments against Fitbit still remain, most notably the abandonment dilemma. However, fueled by growth levers like new products, features, global distribution, and corporate wellness, the Apple Watch should do little to disrupt Fitbit’s momentum.