Nike CEO adds confusion to FuelBand future, stumbles over Apple question
Confusion continues to surround Nike's stance of the future of its Nike FuelBand fitness gadget following the appearance of the company's CEO on CNBC.
According to Mark Parker, the chief executive of Nike, the company is committed to the wearable sector, but will focus more on software going forward.
Citing that "digital sport" was going to get bigger and bigger, Parker said that "digital" would be integrated more and more into other products that Nike offers.
"So you're going to see us continue to commit to this area, to focus on expanding the reach. Today, we have about 30 million FuelBand users. We're hoping to push that over 100 million," Parker told CNBC in a live TV interview.
Mentioning Apple a number of times in the interview, Parker said that the two companies where continuing to work together and he was excited about the partnership going forward.
Asked specifically whether Nike would be making a collaborative device with Apple, there was a long pause, before the Nike CEO admitted that he couldn't answer that question, adding that "the relationship between Apple and Nike would continue, and that we all [at Nike] are excited about what's to come."
As for whether or Nike was out of the hardware business, the response was again guarded:
"We are focusing more on the software side of the experience. I think we will be part of wearables going forward."
Nike and Apple have had a close relationship for some time with Tim Cook, Apple's CEO on the board at Nike. The companies also work together already with the Nike software already pre-installed on iPods, and as current Fuelband users will already know, the Fuelband only works with Apple devices.
The rumours that Nike will be dropping future development of the Nike Fuelband comes as Apple supposedly prepares for the launch of an iWatch, a smartwatch that would connect to your phone and relay notifications and the such.
One theory is that Nike and Apple will collaborate on the iWatch together, offering runners the new tech when or if it eventually becomes available.