Honestly, I don’t know too many people who wear a regular (analog or digital) wristwatch anymore, at least not on a regular basis. I was totally a Timex kid when I was younger and I graduated to some Swiss movement as a young adult. I did wear a smartwatch for a time, but I don’t even do that anymore. And I don’t seem to be alone.

In the summer, it was decreed that smartwatch sales were plummeting. As nice and shiny and new as the Apple Watch and its competitors may have once been, people just aren’t buying them anymore. And this was supposed to be the year of the smartwatch.

But it’s not just smartwatches. People aren’t buying fitness trackers anymore either. Despite positive news that third quarter revenues were up 23 percent, Fitbit has a rather “dismal outlook” for the fourth quarter, marked by the usually lucrative holiday shopping season. As a result, Fitbit stock dropped more than 30 percent in just ten minutes.

The company said that they’re expecting about 2 to 5 percent growth, year over year. Compare that to the 94 percent growth that Fitbit enjoyed in 2015 compared to 2014. Basically, fewer people are interested in buying fitness trackers anymore and that probably includes cheaper versions too.

One theory is that the actual usefulness of a fitness tracker is questionable. Studies have shown that kids who wore the wrist-bound step trackers don’t do any better than their free-wristed counterparts in terms of losing weight. The long-term benefits are even more questionable, because “inactive people did not need a screen to tell them what they already knew,” according to researcher Eric Finkelstein from Duke-National University of Singapore Medical School.

You know that whole 10,000 step thing? It could be just a bunch of hooey, as it doesn’t provide a complete picture. You need muscle strengthening in addition to “moderate intensity aerobic activity.” And then there’s your diet too.


That’s all certainly part of it, but my theory? We just don’t want anything on our wrists anymore, unless they’re friendship bracelets or a WristStrong rubber wristband.

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