Adidas cuts its digital sports division, signaling an end to wearable ambitions

Don't think we'll be seeing that Chameleon tracker after all
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Adidas is putting an end to its Digital Sports unit, the business division responsible for its fitness trackers and other wearable products.

According to report in Women's Wear Daily, this will mean 74 jobs will be either lost or reassigned to other parts of the business. This is also discouraging news for Adidas's wearable future, with the company reported to be shifting focus onto its Runtastic and Adidas apps.

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On whether this all means a definite end to Adidas wearables, a spokeswoman told WWD: "We're not ruling it out but we haven't made a clear commitment".

We've long been waiting for the company to drop its Chameleon fitness tracker for women, which we revealed earlier in the year, but news of a restructuring makes us suspect Chameleon won't see the light of day. There's also an Adidas edition Fitbit Ionic in the pipeline for 2018, though Fitbit has confirmed to us that this is going ahead as planned.

Adidas has been in the wearable space for just over 15 years, in which time we've seen watches, smart clothes and even connected shoes, so it will be a shame to see the company step back from this space.

Adidas bought Runtastic in 2015 and has since closed its own MiCoach service to focus on the acquired platform instead. Like Under Armour and its Healthbox wearables, it looks like the immediate future will be about doubling down on software.

Adidas cuts its digital sports division, signaling an end to wearable ambitions

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Hugh Langley


Now at Business Insider, Hugh originally joined Wareable from TechRadar where he’d been writing news, features, reviews and just about everything else you can think of for three years.

Hugh is now a correspondent at Business Insider.

Prior to Wareable, Hugh freelanced while studying, writing about bad indie bands and slightly better movies. He found his way into tech journalism at the beginning of the wearables boom, when everyone was talking about Google Glass and the Oculus Rift was merely a Kickstarter campaign - and has been fascinated ever since.

He’s particularly interested in VR and any fitness tech that will help him (eventually) get back into shape. Hugh has also written for T3, Wired, Total Film, Little White Lies and China Daily.

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