Apple aims to beef up position in fitness tracker market [2016/07/06 14:45]

Apple, a U.S.-based technology giant, recently introduced its new watch operating system at the 2016 Worldwide Developers Conference.

The new watchOS 3, which places more emphasis on fitness and activity, will be released this fall for Apple’s smartwatch models.

“One of the primary reasons people are wearing the watch today is for fitness and health,” said Kevin Lynch, vice president of technology at Apple, at the annual conference.

The watchOS 3 will offer a new app named Activity, designed to allow users to compare their daily fitness accomplishments with their friends and family, adding a social component.

Fitbit, a leading maker of fitness trackers, already offers a similar feature called the leaderboard with rankings of the user’s activity level compared to friends.

Apple announced that Activity will allow the user to send a “racing” heartbeat to friends and receive notifications of their friends’ progress, adding additional features to Fitbit’s leaderboard.

Apple also unveiled another app called Breathe, which will guide users through deep-breathing sessions throughout the day. The user’s heartbeat will be shown after the breathing session is completed.

Apple’s latest move suggests that many customers purchase wearables such as the Apple Watch, Fitbit and the Samsung Galaxy Gear for fitness and health purposes.

According to a survey by the Ericsson Customer Insight on wearable users from Brazil, China, South Korea, Britain and the U.S., 67 percent of respondents said they put on their devices when they exercise.

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