Mon. Mar 27th, 2023

Fitbit customers: higher one-up your folks in challenges when you nonetheless can. Beginning March twenty seventh, Fitbit will take away all adventures, challenges, and open teams from its app.

It’s a placing transfer. Earlier than 2019’s Google acquisition (and closure in 2021), Fitbit steadily touted its neighborhood and social options as a significant energy. Its challenges — competitions between Fitbit customers — have been a part of Fitbit’s platform for over 10 years and copied by practically each different smartwatch and fitness-tracking platform. Adventures have been launched later as a kind of immersive problem, the place customers might take digital excursions of locations like Yosemite Nationwide Park whereas hitting step targets. In the meantime, open teams are precisely as they sound: teams the place anybody can be part of round a typical curiosity. Many have a number of hundred thousand and even tens of millions of members.

Fitbit’s open teams have 1000’s and even tens of millions of members. Screenshot: Richard Lawler / The Verge

After March twenty seventh, nevertheless, customers will solely be capable to create personal closed teams with pals. To attach with different customers, they’ll have to take action on Fitbit’s Well being & Wellness boards. In the meantime, any trophies earned will even now not be out there. As an alternative, members should work together with pals by way of the Leaderboard and Group Feed posts within the app. Customers may have till March twenty seventh to obtain their knowledge.

For builders, Fitbit can be eradicating Fitbit Studio in favor of its command-line software program growth package (SDK). Fitbit Studio was for builders who needed to create clockfaces, in addition to third-party apps for the platform.

The transfer is purportedly half of a bigger plan to higher combine Google’s tech. In an e mail to The Verge, Fitbit stated these options have been of “restricted use.” Within the case of the SDK, it is smart as Google has been pushing its WearOS 3 platform, and third-party apps have been faraway from Fitbit’s newest Versa 4 and Sense 2 smartwatches. If, nevertheless, the neighborhood options have been actually “restricted use,” that’s a troubling signal relating to Fitbit’s person base.

“Fitbit discovered that these choose options had a restricted variety of energetic customers in comparison with different choices, however are unable to verify particular numbers at the moment,” Nicol Addison, head of communications at Fitbit and Nest, informed The Verge in an e mail.

Final week, the Fitbit app suffered a multiday server outage that left customers unable to sync their knowledge. However whereas the timing of this information is curious, Addison says that the choice to take away older Fitbit options is “unrelated to any current server outage.”

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