Peloton’s Atlas acquisition suggests a smartwatch future

Peloton, known for its smart bikes and treadmills, is clearly gearing up for an entry into the wearables market after completing an acquisition of Austin-based Atlas Wearables. Peloton has yet to make any formal announcements about the wearables business but given the momentum the company has enjoyed over the last year with more consumers working out at home, it would make sense for the fitness firm to challenge Apple, Google’s Fitbit, and others.

Last fall, Peloton announced its first-ever quarterly profit, as sales soared 172% and the company reached the 1 million subscribers milestone for its streaming classes. And many of these fitness enthusiasts were likely wearing a fitness tracker or smartwatch during their workouts. According to Interpret’s New Media Measure®, nearly two-thirds of consumers who use an internet-connected stationary bike also own a wearable, and riding not too far behind, 50% of those using a traditional stationary bike also own a wearable.

A big appeal of Peloton’s product pipeline is the ecosystem the company has created and how it crafts an experience for users, motivating them to reach their fitness goals. Peloton already has the exercise equipment and the app to guide people on their fitness journeys, but a smartwatch could help tie it all together. Just as many people enjoy staying within the Apple ecosystem for their software and hardware – a fact that Apple is banking on with its own Fitness+ program – Peloton has an opportunity to craft a better experience for its customers while not-so-subtly nudging them in the direction of their own wearable product.

Peloton’s customer base has shown little concern for cost. The company’s bikes and treadmills cost thousands of dollars, and then there’s the added cost of classes. If Peloton’s consumers are willing to spend on these products, there’s little reason to think they won’t be up for a brand-new wearable from the company, so long as it enhances the overall fitness experience.