Fitbit was supposed to have released their first full smartwatch this spring, but it may have been pushed back to fall. Sources are saying these are due to some unforeseen production problems that have forced them to go back to the drawing board somewhat. The watch will probably be released alongside a pair of Bluetooth headphones and both are looking to compete with Apple products, hence the pressure to make it good enough or even better than them.
In one of their final prototypes, the GPS was actually not working, and having one is a differentiating factor that they were going to push. So they had to go back and fix the placement of the antennae so as to give the GPS a strong signal. Another problem they encountered is waterproofing the device. So now, they will have to make a decision whether or not to fully waterproof it or to just let it be. But if they want to go head to head with the Apple Watch Series 2, then having it not waterproof is a distinct disadvantage.
Another problem that they may be facing, if the initial reaction to the prototype is any indication, is that their design is not that great. While it will reportedly have a color display with 1000 nits of brightness, heart rate monitoring, support for touchless payments, etc, the design is very retro-looking and not sexy at all. It actually looks a bit like Fitbit Blaze, and so it’s not the most advanced-looking of smartwatches, if they stick to the design.
Whatever ends up in the final design and prototype, Fitbit has to be prepared to fight it out in an increasingly crowded market. We will have to wait until fall to see if they have what it takes, including the release of a pair of Bluetooth headphones as well.