EU antitrust regulators are set to open a full-scale investigation into Google’s $2.1 billion bid for fitness tracker maker Fitbit, people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.
The four-month long investigation will kick off following the end of the European Commission’s preliminary review on Aug. 4, the people said.
Regulators worry that Google might use the additional data gleaned from Fitbit devices to inform its ad products.
Google earlier this month offered not to use Fitbit’s health data to help it target ads in an attempt to address EU antitrust concerns. The opening of a full-scale investigation suggests that this is not sufficient.
Google announced in November 2019 that it would acquire Fitbit, but the deal has yet to be approved by regulators nine months on. The search giant has, to date, failed to make much headway in the wearables space.
Though Fitbit is a comparatively small firm with 28 million active users, the firm’s devices would give Google access to highly sensitive information, even aside from advertising.. Fitbit’s wearables track users’ heart rates, their sleeping patterns, fitness levels, and other health information that Google does not currently have broad access to.