Fitbit says smartwatch still on track for release this year with new sensors

Fitbit’s Pebble-powered smartwatch is long in the coming, but Fitbit’s CEO has confirmed to the Financial Times that the smart wearable is still on track for delivery this year, denying rumours of any delay.

Code-named Project Higgs, according to earlier leaks it features:

  • A refined version of the Blaze aluminium unibody design with accents with swappable bands.
  • 1000 nits of brightness colour screen for easy outdoor visibility.
  • GPS
  • Heart rate monitoring
  • Wireless payments
  • Offline Music from Pandora
  • 4-day battery life between charges

Fitbit CEO James Park also teased an array of new unnamed biometric sensors and noted that the GPS will be “precise”, which is of course ideal for runners.

He also emphasised that the company has chosen long battery life over flashy features such as built-in LTE, which only has a limited market.

Fitbit facing increasing pressure from the Apple Watch, which finally overtook it in terms of shipments. The rumoured $300 Fitbit Smartwatch is becoming increasingly important for the company, whose share price fell 55% in the last 12 months.

Park said the watch was not delayed and will arrive later this year according to the previously known (but unreleased) schedule. He would not be drawn on the actual release date and pricing of the device.

Fitbit is also expected to deliver a set of wireless headphones code-named “Parkside” presumably compatible with Project Higgs and designed to hang around your neck.   Available in “Nightfall Blue” and “Lunar Gray,” they are said to cost around $150.

Fitbit has shown good support for Windows phones and PCs over the years, and with the demise of the Microsoft Band, the Project Higgs looks like a good replacement going forward. Hopefully, when it is delivered it will be worth the wait.

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