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Adidas buys Runtastic to boost its fitness tech

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Adidas is no stranger to technology by any means, but it clearly feels that it needs a leg up -- the fitness equipment maker has bought fitness tech firm Runtastic for just shy of $240 million. Both companies are wonderfully vague about what the deal entails, beyond extolling the virtues of a "perfect match" and helping Adidas "unleash its knowledge of sport." However, you'll be glad to hear that this isn't likely to deprive you of those all-important apps or wearables. Runtastic will live as a separate entity within Adidas, and it doesn't expect much to change on a day-to-day basis. For the most part, this means more cash and technical possibilities.

The deal could help Adidas keep pace with a fitness industry where having a good app is as important as a pair of high-performance athletic shoes. Runtastic got its start in activity-tracking software, and it could help fend off Nike and other competitors that have a strong track record with apps. Also, it has experience with technology that Adidas hasn't really explored, like virtual reality -- this gives Adidas some know-how that it would otherwise have to develop from scratch.

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