Love your own—this appears to be Apple’s latest initiative as it pulls out third-party fitness bands from its Apple Stores. The website, Re/code, reports that popular fitness bands such as the Jawbone Up and the Nike+ FuelBand are no longer sold at some Apple Stores in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York. Other stores could follow the move.
Although Apple isn’t confirming the report, the world’s most valuable company could be preparing for the arrival of the Apple Watch, which incited ambivalent reactions in the media and the consumer industry. The iffy responses are expected to increase once the Apple Watch hits the stores on April 24.
Apple is expanding its product portfolio with the Apple Watch, and the smartwatch could secure the company’s future; analysts are expecting the Apple Watch to do what the iPhone did to Apple a few years ago. Given the case, it makes sense to pull out third-party fitness bands because Apple now considers them as competitors. It’s worth noting that Apple did the same thing to Bose’s headphones after it acquired Beats.
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Furthermore, Apple also removed Mio’s fitness bands, which can monitor a user’s heart rate. The company’s founder, Liz Dickinson, tells Re/code that Apple informed her about the decision to remove its products, citing that a new marketing executive wanted to rebrand the stores. Apple reportedly wanted its brand to be the “front and center” of everything. The message is clear: love your own.