CES: Fitbit Aims to Hook Consumers With News Feed and New Partnerships

CES: Fitbit Aims to Hook Consumers With News Feed and New Partnerships

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Fitbit is rolling out new social features on its app, including a news feed where users can share exercise summaries, read health-related content and join like-minded communities, according to Bloomberg. The fitness-tracking wristband maker is also upgrading its personal-trainer app, Fitstar, to give users custom recommendations based on historical Fitbit data, the company announced at CES in Las Vegas.

“The top priority for us to be a ‘need to have’ versus a ‘nice to have,”’ Fitbit CEO James Park said. “We’re trying to work towards a vision over some period of time where people say it’d be crazy to leave the house without a Fitbit because of the impact it’s going to have on my health. 2017 is going to be key.” Park has been talking about turning Fitbit into a software and digital-health company for years.

At CES Fitbit also unveiled an alliance with UnitedHealthcare Motion wellness program that will let participants use Fitbit’s Charge 2 fitness tracker. People can earn as much as $1,500 in health savings accounts or reimbursement credits each year if they reach certain fitness metrics. Fitbit activity trackers are already used in weight-management and corporate wellness programs. But this is the first time the tracker is being directly integrated into a health plan’s design to give users a financial motive to get fit.

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