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Technology The Justice Department will reportedly investigate Google’s Fitbit acquisition

00:10  11 december  2019
00:10  11 december  2019 Source:   theverge.com

Alphabet is reportedly interested in buying Fitbit

  Alphabet is reportedly interested in buying Fitbit Fitbit is apparently quite serious about exploring a sale. Reuterssources said Alphabet has "made an offer" to buy Fitbit for an as yet undetermined amount. The insiders warned there was no guarantee the talks would lead to a deal, but the indication of interest is still huge by itself. We've reached out to Alphabet and Fitbit for comment, although they declined to comment to Reuters. If Alphabet did snap up Fitbit, it could dramatically change the landscape for smartwatches. In spite of challenges, Fitbit is still one of the largest smartwatch makers on the planet -- this would quickly consolidate the market.

The US Department of Justice will reportedly review Google ’ s November acquisition of wearables company Fitbit , potentially probing The New York Post reports that the Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission — either of which could have investigated the merger — both had

FILE PHOTO: Fitbit Blaze watch is seen in front of a displayed Google logo in this illustration. The New York Post was the first to report that the Justice Department will review the merger. The Federal Trade Commission also reviews mergers and could have investigated Google ' s deal for Fitbit .

The US Department of Justice will reportedly review Google’s November acquisition of wearables company Fitbit, potentially probing concerns about the detailed user data that Fitbit would give Google.

a close up of a knife© Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

The New York Post reports that the Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission — either of which could have investigated the merger — both had concerns about the merger. But the Justice Department already opened a larger antitrust investigation into Google, demanding documents from the company in September. The agency has also announced a wide-ranging probe of large technology companies, focusing on “search, social media, and some retail services.” The FTC was given authority to investigate Facebook and Amazon.

Google owner Alphabet wants to buy Fitbit, report says

  Google owner Alphabet wants to buy Fitbit, report says Google's parent company Alphabet has offered to acquire Fitbit, according to a Reuters report.But, the existence of an offer doesn’t suggest an acquisition is imminent: “There is no certainty that the negotiations between Google and Fitbit will lead to any deal,” according to the Reuters report.

The U. S . Justice Department will review plans by Alphabet-owned Google to buy fitness tracker maker Fitbit Inc for possible antitrust issues, a The New York Post was the first to report that the Justice Department will review the merger. The Federal Trade Commission also reviews mergers

Official website of the U. S . Department of Justice (DOJ). The Justice Department hosts the Third Annual Attorney General’ s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing.

Reuters also confirmed that the Justice Department will take the lead in an investigation.

Several privacy and consumer rights groups have urged the government to block Google’s Fitbit acquisition. The deal could help Google compete with Apple in the wearable computing market. But unlike Apple, Google’s primary business involves targeted advertising, data mining, and services that manage massive parts of our digital lives. Buying a popular fitness tracking device gives it an even greater store of data.

And Justice Department antitrust chief Makan Delrahim has hinted that privacy concerns could play a role in any investigation. “It would be a grave mistake to believe that privacy concerns can never play a role in antitrust analysis,” Delrahim said at a conference in November, soon after the acquisition. “Without competition, a dominant firm can more easily reduce quality — such as by decreasing privacy protections — without losing a significant number of users.”

Google buys Fitbit for $2.1 billion

  Google buys Fitbit for $2.1 billion Fitbit is to be acquired by Google in an all-cash deal valued at around $2.1 billion, the company announced today. "Google is an ideal partner to advance our mission," says James Park, Fitbit CEO (pictured) "with Google's resources and global platform, Fitbit will be able to accelerate innovation in the wearables category." The company has been dogged by rumors that it was exploring a sale, and that Google's parent company Alphabet was the prime bidder. The deal is expected to close next year, pending approval from regulators and Fitbit shareholders.

According to Reuters, Google parent Alphabet is looking to acquire publicly traded wearables company Fitbit . Acquiring Fitbit would also fit into Google ’ s overall hardware strategy, now that it is building its own phones and other devices. In early 2018, it also closed its acquisition of large parts of HTC’s

“ Google ’ s proposed acquisition of Fitbit would also give the company deep insights into Americans’ most sensitive The Fitbit deal is Google ’ s second major acquisition this year. It agreed to buy cloud services Doubling down on acquisitions while being investigated for anti-competitive practices will

Google has been cleared to buy many other companies over the past two decades, albeit with some restrictions added. As public criticism of tech monopolies has grown, the outcome of this Fitbit review could indicate how seriously the Justice Department is actually pursuing limits on large tech companies’ power — and unlike a larger review, it won’t have to deal with undoing mergers that have already closed. But you might still want to delete your Fitbit data just in case.

Google reportedly facing a DOJ probe over its $2.1 billion Fitbit purchase .
Both the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) apparently aren't thrilled with Google's Fitbit acquisition. According to a New York Post report, both agencies are concerned that the purchase would give Google access to even more personal data, and they both sought authority to investigate the deal. Since the DOJ is already looking into Google's practices as part of a larger anti-competition probe, though, it was reportedly put in charge of reviewing the merger. A Post source said: "The DOJ's handling of Fitbit will give an early read on the Google investigation.

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