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This type of headline isn't healthy, 'tossed my Fitbit in the trash' is almost implying it's a solution to Google now having your Fitbit data; in reality, the article goes into the correct way to perform this: deleting your fitbit account.

You can’t use a Fitbit without a Fitbit account. It becomes junk once you delete the account. Even if you do trust them to have deleted your data.

I had a Fitbit, and the first thing I did was file a bug report on the lack of support for HealthKit - in other words mandating that you give them all your data, after you already paid for the device.

That responded saying that they did not want to support HealthKit or any secure data method - I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt, which in hindsight was stupid: it should have been clear that they wanted to profit off the stolen data.

> they wanted to profit off the stolen data

At least Google has some incentive to keep the data for themselves (to target ads at you), rather than sell it to third parties.

Still, I’ll be looking at different brands next time my Fitbit breaks.

Google don’t sell data to third parties, they rent it. Completely different.

Last time I checked you still needed a fitbit account to use the device though.

What are the alternatives ? MS band ? Apple watch ? xiaomi ?

I've asked myself the same thing. After some digging I've found Withings that looks fairly promising:

https://www.withings.com/us/en/pulse-hr https://www.withings.com/us/en/steel-hr-sport

Though they are still gathering a lot of data. It feels better than Fitbit/Google, but I wish they'd spend some time on encryption / privacy.

For example, all the GPS data, that's useful for showing a map of the run and measure the distance, but certainly doesn't need to go on their servers. They should encrypt the GPS points and only send the shape (vector path) to their servers. That would contain info about distance, but not where in the world the person was running.

Similar things could be done for other things.

A vector path is just a jigsaw puzzle piece. There are only so many places in the world where you’d have a certain shape dictated by local streets, footpaths and bridges.

You don't need to sync your data. Delete your account and just write down your daily stats with a pencil if you like. The device will automatically discard old data when it fills up.

I am pretty sure you can't access the dashboard if you are not logged in.

How does one deleting their account apply to any backups the company in question might have? Sure, it won't be in the next back up, but am I too conspiracy minded that someone so hungry for user data like Google would not work back through backups for this very purpose?

You could GDPR request deletion instead of using the built-in 'delete account' feature, and in the request note that you would like to know if they also delete your account from their backups or what their backup retention policies are like. GDPR deletion requests also mean they have to delete the data from their backups.

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