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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:10 PM   #1
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Fitbit Issues Recall for Fitbit Force Over Skin Irritation Reports




Fitbit today stopped sales of its Fitbit Force and issued a voluntary recall of the product following multiple consumer complaints of skin irritation.

First released in October of 2013, the Fitbit Force is the company's latest wearable activity tracker, monitoring sleep, steps taken, distance traveled, calories burned, and stairs climbed.

Reports of skin irritation from the Fitbit Force began gaining traction in January after a report from The Consumerist pointed to multiple users experiencing contact dermatitis after prolonged use of the band.

Fitbit quickly began offering refunds or product replacements to affected customers and suggested the problems could be caused by a nickel allergy, as nickel is an element of the stainless steel used in the band. Fitbit's full recall letter is below, courtesy of TechCrunch:
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We wanted to provide an update on our investigation into reports we have received about Force users experiencing skin irritation.

From the beginning, we've taken this matter very seriously. We hired independent labs and medical experts to conduct a thorough investigation, and have now learned enough to take further action. The materials used in Force are commonly found in many consumer products, and affected users are likely experiencing an allergic reaction to these materials.

While only a small percentage of Force users have reported any issue, we care about every one of our customers. We have stopped selling Force and are in the process of conducting a voluntary recall, out of an abundance of caution. We are also offering a refund directly to consumers for full retail price. We want to thank each and every member of the Fitbit community for their continued loyalty and support. We are working on our next-generation tracker and will announce news about it soon.

For additional information, please contact our support line at: 888-656-6381, or visit http://www.fitbit.com/forcesupport.
According to Fitbit co-founder and CEO James Park, only 1.7 percent of Fitbit users have reported skin irritation issues. An independent study did, however, determine the Fitbit is causing allergic contact dermatitis in some users, likely as a result of nickel contact or from the strap materials/glue used in the device's construction.

Fitbit Force owners can request a refund for their devices from the Fitbit website, with the company promising to send a reimbursement check within two to six weeks after a returned device is received. Fitbit is also working on an updated hypoallergenic version of the Force to be released sometime in the near future.

Article Link: Fitbit Issues Recall for Fitbit Force Over Skin Irritation Reports
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:14 PM   #2
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Everyone trying to beat Apple to the punch these folks aren't even doing proper testing first.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:15 PM   #3
bailcam
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Love my Fitbit Force, glad I'm not having any issues.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:16 PM   #4
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Love my Fitbit Force, glad I'm not having any issues.
same here, i wish it had something to put over the charge port so i could wear it in the shower though.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:21 PM   #5
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same here, i wish it had something to put over the charge port so i could wear it in the shower though.
I love my too. Waterproof would make it perfect. I swim laps and it bums me out when I have to take it off
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:23 PM   #6
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What are these people doing to get skin irritation ?
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:24 PM   #7
JAT
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Doesn't seem like much of a story. But irritation is part of why I stopped wearing watches 25 years ago. And other jewelry after that.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:29 PM   #8
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Everyone trying to beat Apple to the punch these folks aren't even doing proper testing first.
Apple did not even do proper testing of the iPhone4 in respect of being a phone!

Realistically if Apple want to be 100% sure then they should go with surgical grade titanium.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:29 PM   #9
DarkWinter
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Meanwhile in the UK...still waiting for either the Fitbit Force or Jawbone UP24 to even be released.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:33 PM   #10
Twitchy
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Use it

I use mine 24/7 and haven't had any problems.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:37 PM   #11
MrXiro
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I was actually looking into getting one of these this week, but they were sold out everywhere I checked... now I know why. Got a Pebble instead.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:38 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Plutonius View Post
What are these people doing to get skin irritation ?
They're doing the terrible deed of being biologically allergic to some of the materials used. How dare they.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:41 PM   #13
dBeats
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My nike fuel can go in the shower and no irritation after almost a year's worth of use....
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:45 PM   #14
IJ Reilly
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A person can get contact dermatitis from nearly anything, especially in hot and humid conditions, so I don't see how this problem can be avoided entirely. I've gotten it from my glasses, and they're made from plastic.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:50 PM   #15
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Call Notifications still Coming Soon?

I hope this doesn't sidetrack the promised firmware update with Call Notifications. The CEO stating "We have stopped selling Force" and "we’re working on our next-generation tracker and will announce news about it soon" sounds like it's the end of Force.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:51 PM   #16
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My nike fuel can go in the shower and no irritation after almost a year's worth of use....
And I can eat a bag of peanuts with no ill effects.

You point being?
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:52 PM   #17
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I actually didn't like the fitbit force for several reasons:

Not waterproof,
cannot swap out rubber band,
too big/felt heavy, I always knew I was wearing it,
the clasp felt like it was always loose.

After about a month of wearing it, i returned and "downgraded" back to the FitBit Flex, which I absolutely love.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:54 PM   #18
DarkAether
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I started getting a rash under the charging port area of the Force after 6 weeks with no problems. Luckily I bought it at REI who has a long-term satisfaction guarantee, so when I brought it to the store and showed them my wrist, they offered a refund without issue. I ended up using the credit towards the Fitbit One model which has the same functionality and fits in your pocket or can clip on with an included clip case as well as comes with a velcro wrist band.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:55 PM   #19
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Well, that product didn't last long. The Force was on sale for about six months, I believe? Shame to think of all the money spent on R&D and production for a product that had such a short life cycle.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 02:56 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by IJ Reilly View Post
A person can get contact dermatitis from nearly anything, especially in hot and humid conditions, so I don't see how this problem can be avoided entirely. I've gotten it from my glasses, and they're made from plastic.
I applaud Fitbit for acting quickly, being open, and offering full refunds. That's how companies should react to issues. With that being said, I don't think there is much else they can do. A certain percentage of people are going to be allergic to something. Moisture is beast. If my Ironman get sweaty during workouts, I have to remove it immediately afterwards or suffer the consequences. Dry, just walking around? No issues.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 03:02 PM   #21
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And I can eat a bag of peanuts with no ill effects.

You point being?
I heard peanuts make you gassy...
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 03:03 PM   #22
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While only a small percentage of Force users have reported any issue, we care about every one of our customers. We have stopped selling Force and are in the process of conducting a voluntary recall, out of an abundance of caution.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 03:28 PM   #23
IJ Reilly
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I applaud Fitbit for acting quickly, being open, and offering full refunds. That's how companies should react to issues. With that being said, I don't think there is much else they can do. A certain percentage of people are going to be allergic to something. Moisture is beast. If my Ironman get sweaty during workouts, I have to remove it immediately afterwards or suffer the consequences. Dry, just walking around? No issues.
Exactly. Anybody who has any problem with a product for any reason should be able to return that product for a full refund. That's business 101.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 03:36 PM   #24
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I hope this doesn't sidetrack the promised firmware update with Call Notifications. The CEO stating "We have stopped selling Force" and "we’re working on our next-generation tracker and will announce news about it soon" sounds like it's the end of Force.
I came here to say exactly this, I'm worried that they will no longer release that firmware (why add to support load for a product they just recalled)...

Dammit.
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Old Feb 21, 2014, 03:37 PM   #25
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Love my Fitbit Force, glad I'm not having any issues.
I've gone with the Up 24 band from Jawbone. It can be worn in the shower, but not submerged.
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