Fitbit is well known in the health and fitness industry for their popular heart rate monitoring and step tracking devices. While these wearables are already fairly well-received, Fitbit seems interested in expanding their market share to a new customer base - diabetics and pre-diabetics.
According to CNBC, the company has made its "first-ever" start-up investment, funneling well over $6 million of its own funds into a company called Sano.
The start-up is reportedly developing a small, coin-sized patch that will be capable of tracking one's blood sugar over time. The catch is that Sano's patch will still need to prick its wearer with a series of minuscule needles to obtain an accurate reading, an experience that is probably going to be less than pleasant for most users. That said, Sano claims their patch will still cause less discomfort than other options on the market while also being cheaper.
"This fits into our strategy of looking beyond the device and thinking more about [health] solutions," said Fitbit CEO James Park in a statement to CNBC, referencing the Sano investment. "I think the complete solution comes in the form of having some monitoring solution that is coupled with a display, and a wearable that can give you the interventions at the right moment."
Despite this information, Fitbit declined to confirm whether or not Sano's in-development patch will be making its way to a future wearable. Regardless, it would be a smart move on Fitbit's part as it would allow them to reach an as-of-yet largely unserviced portion of the market.
If Fitbit does opt to move forward with such a device, they'll need to hurry. Apple could already be working on a similar, less-intrusive alternative according to another report.