It has not been a good year for Jawbone, the once-pioneering maker of fitness trackers and Bluetooth speakers, and it appears to be getting worse. Multiple reports over the weekend say that the company is running on fumes, unable to pay its third-party support vendor and nearly sold out of products.
Jawbone had apparently been using the Portland, Maine company NexRep to provide customer support; that relationship reportedly ended earlier this month after Jawbone stopped paying its bills. (For its part, a Jawbone rep told The Verge that the company was reviewing its bills from NexRep, the implication being that this is just a business dispute with a public-facing vendor.)
All of Jawbone’s fitness trackers are listed as “sold out” on the company’s site. Jawbone had announced earlier this year a “medical-grade” tracker, but no details or release date have been given.
Last November, Jawbone laid off 15 percent of its staff and closed its New York office. In January, the company raised $165 million in a down round of funding and its president quit. In April, a judge invalidated several of Jawbone’s fundamental wearables patents. In May, reports surfaced that Jawbone had stopped production of its UP2, UP3, and UP4 trackers.
Whatever is going on a Jawbone, it’s not good. With no products in hand to sell and an indefinite date for a new product in a commoditized market, it’s not clear what there is left of the company.