Fitbit, the leading fitness wearable company, has announced that it has acquired Coin, who has a wearable payments system. You might not have thought that Fitbit was going to move in this direction, but future devices could well offer mobile payments.
In the announcement of the news, Fitbit says that the deal covers intellectual property and certain personnel involved in Coin's payment platform. It doesn't take a genius to work out how this might make for a pretty pairing.
Fitbit has so far concentrated on fitness tracking, from the humble Flex, to increasingly featured devices. Expanding its skillset by offering some form of mobile payments, means that you could, for example, be out running and decide to get the train home with a coffee, all paid for via your Fitbit.
Fitbit has said that there are no plans to integrate any of this technology into the 2016 portfolio, but that an "active NFC payment solution" can be developed for future devices.
"Coin has been one of the key innovators in advanced payment solutions. The inclusion of their payment technology into our offerings will further our strategy of making Fitbit products an indispensable part of people's lives," said James Park, CEO and co-founder of Fitbit.
On the Coin side of the deal, this marks the end of Coin 2.0. This isn't part of the future plans of Fitbit, and existing cards will continue to work until their battery runs out. Not future Coin 2.0 products will be manufactured.