(credit: Valentina Palladino)
It’s no secret that Fitbit is making a smartwatch.

The company signaled its serious plans with the purchase of Pebble at 2016’s end and the purchase of the lesser-known Vector shortly after.

Fitbit was supposed to release a smartwatch this spring, but product issues delayed those plans. Rumors suggest we won’t have to wait much longer, though, as the company may release an entirely new product this fall: a smartwatch that many want to rival the Apple Watch as well as Android Wear devices.
Fitbit has plenty of reasons why it would want to confront Apple in the wearable space: Apple overtook the company as the top wearable shipper, owning 14.6 percent of the wearable market (tied with Xiaomi) in Q1 2017.

But Fitbit shouldn’t make an Apple Watch clone—and one could argue that it can’t do so anyway.

There’s hope for Fitbit’s smartwatch if the company takes a different approach, focusing on its roots as a fitness company while also adopting the most useful aspects of the smartwatches we have today. Here’s what we know about the device so far—and what we don’t know—as well as some things Fitbit should consider including in the new device.
What we know
Back in May, leaked images of the rumored Fitbit smartwatch popped up online and painted an all-too-familiar picture of what the new product could look like.

The design of the wristband mimics the company’s Blaze tracker (as well as the old-school Surge) with a square face accompanied by a couple buttons on the edges.
It’s not the sleekest-looking device, but neither the Blaze nor the Apple Watch were perceived as stylish when they first debuted.
Since then, sales for both of those devices have proved users have either warmed up to the square-watch design or simply don’t care enough to be deterred by it.
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