Adidas buys Runtastic, joins competitive wearables field

The health wearables industry is getting more competitive as another brand-name fitness apparel maker enters the race.

Adidas AG has acquired fitness app maker Runtastic for $239 million, boosting its potential wearables user base by 70 million, according to a Reuters report. Adidas, which debuted its miCoach fitness device in 2014, had been losing steam in the sporting goods sector, the report said.

Runtastic, according to the report, has more than 20 apps that focus on endurance, health and fitness activities. 

Adidas has tough competition in the market, which includes big tech companies such as Apple and Google, as well as other sportswear makers like Under Armour. Earlier this year, Under Armour bought MyFitnessPal, a health and fitness resource app, to create what it claims will be the largest global digital health community. It paid $475 million for MyFitnessPal and $85 million for Endomondo, an open fitness-tracking platform and social network based in Denmark. The two acquisitions will expand Under Armour's Connected Fitness community to more than 120 million users, as well as its tools portfolio, which includes UA RECORD apps and MapMyFitness, the latter of which Under Armour acquired in 2013.

That's not to mention the strides mHealth giant Fitbit is making, with the company exceeding expectations for its IPO in June.

But despite the crowded field, there may be room for many different options when it comes to mHealth fitness tools. The global wearables market enjoyed its eighth consecutive quarter of growth in the first quarter of 2015, according to a report from research firm IDC. The 11.4 million products sold that quarter are a 200 percent spike compared to the 3.8 million wearables shipped a year ago. 

For more information:
- read the Reuters report