The Verge / Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales
This year has been a relatively quiet one for smartwatches. It makes sense. The smartwatch renaissance of 2022 was always going to be a hard act to follow, let alone top. But among the slew of iterative updates, there was one thing that kept catching my eye: the messy Googlefication of Fitbit.
Basically, Google, which owns Fitbit, spent this year taking two steps forward before shooting itself in the foot and taking a step back. Every time I felt encouraged by what I was seeing, unforced errors would leave me doubting again.
2023 kicked off with a massive, multiday Fitbit server outage. Shortly after, Fitbit announced it was shuttering legacy community features like Challenges, Adventures, and Groups. Google said these social features…