Google introduced the deal in November final 12 months, a transfer which might permit it to tackle Apple and Samsung within the crowded marketplace for health trackers and good watches. Huawei and Xiaomi additionally compete out there.
Critics nonetheless mentioned the deal would give the U.S. tech large entry to a trove of well being knowledge gathered from Fitbit’s health trackers and different devices used to watch customers’ each day steps, energy burned and distance travelled.
BEUC, which counts 45 nationwide client organisations from 32 European nations as its members, mentioned the Google bid marks yet one more strategic deal in digital markets by a handful of tech giants amassing unprecedented market energy.
“If Google acquires customers’ knowledge generated by means of Fitbit wearables, together with now COVID-19 associated knowledge, it might be capable of use that knowledge for its personal profit and will undermine the flexibility of different corporations to convey new merchandise to customers,” BEUC mentioned in a report.
“This might hurt innovation and client alternative in a number of markets corresponding to internet advertising, search, well being and wearables. The proposed merger due to this fact has the potential to the touch not solely digital markets but in addition a significant a part of all European residents’ lives, their well being and well-being.”
Google, who has been fined greater than eight billion euros by EU antitrust regulators for abusing its market energy in on-line searches and its Android smartphone working system, mentioned it might be clear in regards to the knowledge it collects from wearables and why.
“We’ll by no means promote private data to anybody. Fitbit well being and wellness knowledge is not going to be used for Google advertisements. And we are going to give Fitbit customers the selection to assessment, transfer, or delete their knowledge,” the corporate mentioned, reiterating feedback from a November weblog when it introduced the deal.
It’s now briefing EU antitrust regulators in regards to the deal prior to creating a proper request for approval.
The European Data Protection Board in February warned the deal might pose privateness dangers. Privateness advocates and a few U.S. lawmakers have known as on the U.S. Division of Justice to dam the deal.
— to www.gadgetsnow.com