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Fitbit app to be pre-loaded on the new HTC One (M8) smartphone

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN FRANCISCO — Fitbit on Wednesday announced that its activity and sleep trackers now sync directly with 44 Android and iOS devices, up from 26 in early January. In addition, to bring health and fitness tracking to even more users, Fitbit also announced Wednesday that the free Fitbit app will be pre-loaded on the new HTC One (M8), allowing users to track their activity with just their smartphone.

“By combining the most product choices for health and fitness tracking with compatibility to the largest number of devices, users can choose what best fits their lifestyle and have better success in reaching their health and fitness goals,” stated James Park, CEO Fitbit.

Expanding health and fitness tracking to even more people, Fitbit and HTC announced a partnership this week where the Fitbit app will come pre-loaded on the new HTC One (M8) device in select regions and is available to HTC One (M8) owners anywhere that Fitbit can be downloaded from the Google Play store. The Fitbit app allows users to track basic activity, including steps taken, distance travelled and calories burned. They can set fitness goals and then see their achievements right on their HTC BlinkFeed home screen and lock screen. By combining HTC’s power-saving sensor hub with the power and accuracy of the Fitbit app, users can track their fitness and stay motivated with just their smartphone. They can also challenge, compete or encourage other users who have a Fitbit tracker3 or are utilizing the app on their phone. As the top downloaded app in its category, Fitbit has a large community, helping users stay motivated by sharing and competing with anyone that has the Fitbit app.

Instant access to up-to-date data on mobile devices makes it easy to integrate fitness into everyday life, Fitbit noted. Fitbit’s activity trackers sync via Bluetooth 4.0 to the widest variety of mobile devices across both Android and iOS platforms. The Fitbit app is the top downloaded app for connected fitness devices on both Google Play and Apple iTunes stores. 

Android users are rapidly embracing the Fitbit app, with more than 1 million downloads from the Google Play store and a 4-star rating. In a recent study by app analytics firm Distimo, the free Fitbit app accounted for 83% of device installs on Google Play among top fitness tracker apps. The Distimo study also verified that Fitbit dominates companion apps for fitness trackers competition on iOS with 72% of downloads.

Regardless of platform, with direct syncing to the free Fitbit app, users can see real-time activity stats from Fitbit’s family of activity and sleep trackers, which measure everything from steps taken, distance travelled, calories burned, active minutes and floors climbed to sleep quality. Fitbit’s mobile and online tools are proven to boost motivation (users with one or more friends are 27% more active) with features like notifications, badges and leaderboards; reach goals faster with a little friendly competition using the cheer, taunt and direct message functions with friends. Fitbit users take 43% more steps with Fitbit products, the company reported. 

 

 

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CVS Caremark awarded three-year FEP contract

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark has been awarded a three-year contract to provide integrated PBM for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Government-wide Service Benefit Plan, also known as the Federal Employee Program.

The company stated that it will continue to provide retail PBM services, mail service pharmacy, specialty pharmacy services and highly customized clinical programs to FEP’s more than 5 million federal employees, retirees and dependents. The new agreement, which runs through 2017, brings the relationship between CVS Caremark and FEP to more than 20 years.

"FEP is a highly valued client and we are committed to delivering the same high level of service and patient satisfaction that we have provided to FEP’s federal employees, retirees and their families for many years," stated Jon Roberts, president of the CVS Caremark PBM business. "We are pleased that FEP continues to recognize the value and services that CVS Caremark provides to their plan and members."

 

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Perrigo launches store brand adult nutritional line

BY Michael Johnsen

DUBLIN — Perrigo on Wednesday announced that its Nutritionals segment is partnering with KanPak to manufacture store brand adult nutritional drinks comparable to Ensure products. KanPak is a supplier of beverages and desserts using aseptic processing technology. 

In 2013 Golden State Foods, one of the largest diversified food processors and distributors in the United States, acquired a controlling interest in KanPak. Perrigo will supply retailers with six store brand versions of the six nutritional drinks currently sold in the Ensure line. The adult nutritional drink market represents $900 million in annual branded sales for the last 12 months, as measured by SymphonyIRI Group.

"Our nutritionals team already supplies leading retailers with a range of nutritionals, from infant formula to adult vitamins, so this is a logical extension for our business," stated Joseph Papa, Perrigo chairman, president and CEO. "We made a significant investment into this partnership to bring quality, affordable healthcare products to retailers and the adult consumers they serve across the United States."

 

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