Facebook to launch smartwatch with focus on fitness, messaging in 2022
Facebook's Apple Watch and Fitbit rival will launch in 2022
The Information reports that Facebook is building a smartwatch as part of its ongoing hardware efforts, which already include Oculus VR headsets and the Portal smart display.
It will use an open-source version of Google’s Android software and include its own cellular connection, meaning owners won’t need to rely on a smartphone for internet access.
Feature-wise, the Facebook watch is set to focus on messaging through Messenger and other Facebook platforms. The social giant is also planning several fitness & health features including the ability to track workouts and connect to services from Peloton and others.
Facebook’s watch, which will have to compete with top smartwatches from Apple and Fitbit, is scheduled to launch in 2022 with a successor planned for as soon as 2023. We don’t know how much it’ll cost yet, but the company will reportedly price it near the cost of production.
This ultimately suggests that Facebook is more interested in collecting valuable user data that can be leveraged with future services than generating profit through hardware sales.
Whether the Facebook smartwatch will succeed remains to be seen. Facebook has a poor track record when it comes to user privacy, so handing over health data to the company might be off-putting for consumers.