Apple plans to stock up on Jawbone Fitness bands to sell in its retail stores. This decision is a surprising move considering that the company stopped selling the devices awhile back. The Cupertino-based tech giant never offered an official reason as to why it stopped selling Jawbone (and Nike) fitness bands. Many assumed the company wanted to remove devices similar to the Apple Watch to cut competition. However, the Fitbit’s removal was more likely because it lacked support for the HealthKit platform.
Apple Stores to soon start carrying Jawbone UP
Apple’s decision to bring back Jawbone UP wearables is a big move for both companies. Jason Donahue(senior project manager for Jawbone) confirmed that both the UP2 and UP3 bands will be available this summer at Apple retail stores. Jawbone is set to roll out the UP4 wristband sometime this year. This device reportedly features a contact-less payment system similar to Apple Pay.
The Apple Watch is still relatively new, and it’s too early to tell if the product is a success. The reason Apple will bring Jawbone products back into its stores remains a mystery. Jawbone had its share of problems for awhile, with one of the most notable issues involving the delay of the UP3. The company was afraid its attempts to make the device waterproof made it look like a child’s craft project.
Jawbone also received a loan from BlackRock for $300 million, and if the devices sell, BlackRock will receive its money back before the earliest investors.
The reason Apple will bring back Jawbone
It is highly unlikely Apple plans to bring back Jawbone products because it wants to boost the fitness tech company’s image. Apple understands that both products provide different needs. If a customer wants a simple fitness tracking device, they will want Jawbone. If a customer wants something more, they are more likely to purchase the Apple Watch.