There have been rumours that Nike will stop making its FuelBand wearable device, and now it looks like the rumours have come true.
A person familiar with Nike’s plans confirmed to CNET that the company will get out of the fitness band business and will stick with software, such as the Nike+ app for the iPhone.
“As a fast-paced, global business we continually align resources with business priorities,” Nike spokesman Brian Strong tells CNET. “As our Digital Sport priorities evolve, we expect to make changes within the team, and there will be a small number of layoffs. We do not comment on individual employment matters.”
As many as 55 people of the 70-person hardware team, part of the larger Digital Sport division, were let go on Thursday, according to CNET’s source.
It seems obvious that Nike would jump out of the hardware game right now, with the upcoming iWatch on its way, as well as wearable Android devices, such as Samsung’s Gear Fit, flooding the market.
But as CNET reports:
As Apple enters the fray, Nike has a potential partner. Apple CEO Tim Cook, who was seen wearing a FuelBand at the company’s launch of the in October of 2012, sits on Nike’s board, and has for the last nine years. That relationship has been fruitful over the years, helping Nike enter the wearable market as early as 2006, with the Nike+iPod shoe sensor package, with a strong brand partner.