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The Fitbit Ionic Recall: What You Need To Know


Fitbits are jam-packed with features nowadays: You can count your steps, calculate your resting heart rate, and even detect arterial fibrillation. But reports today indicate that some Fitbit users are experiencing a feature they definitely never asked for: burning.

Fitbit announced today that it’s working with the Consumer Product Safety Commission to voluntarily recall all of its Ionic model of smartwatches: one of the brand’s top-of-the-line trackers designed for “athletes at all levels.” The watch is equipped with on-screen workouts, a 24/7 heart rate monitor, and phone-free music listening.

“Customer safety is always Fitbit’s top priority and out of an abundance of caution, we are conducting a voluntary recall of Fitbit Ionic smartwatches,” Fitbit said in a statement, per The Verge.

The recall comes after the brand received over 100 reports of the watch’s lithium-ion battery overheating, as well as 78 consumers reporting burn injuries. These reported cases account for less than 0.01 percent of the estimated one million Ionic smartwatches sold in the U.S., including two reports of third-degree burns and four reports of second-degree burns.

An additional 693,000 units have been sold internationally with 40 people reporting burn injuries. The recalled model numbers include FB503CPBU (in slate blue/burnt orange), FB503GYBK (in charcoal/smoke gray), FB503WTGY (blue gray/silver gray), and FB503WTNV (Addidas edition, ink blue/silver gray).

Ionic smartwatches were discontinued in 2020, but were still being sold on third-party vendors like Amazon, Walmart, and Best Buy as recently as December 2021. So if you just so happened to snatch one up over the holidays (or any time since the watch launched in 2017), Fitbit recommends taking the wearable off immediately.

The company has also stated it will provide prepaid packaging for returns and issue a $299 refund. You should also expect to receive a 40 percent discount code for select Fitbit devices. (You can call at 888-925-1764 or visit Fitbit’s online refund center to get the ball rolling.)

This isn’t the first time the brand has recalled one of its wearables. Back in 2014, Fitbit recalled about one million units of its Force model in the US and another 28,000 in Canada after the materials from the band caused allergic reactions, blistering, redness, and rashes. Back then, the brand offered users a full refund.

Below, shop alternative fitness trackers to help you count your steps, reps, and heart rate.

3 alternative fitness trackers to nab in time for your next workout

Apple Watch Series 7 GPS — $429.00

The latest Apple Watch will take you far with activity tracking, sleep monitoring, and phone-free listening capabilities. This device is especially game-changing if you’re an iPhone user, since you can transition seamlessly between typing on your phone and engaging with the device on your wrist.

Garmin Forerunner 235 GPS Running Watch — $190.00

If you’re a runner, Garmin’s GPS watch will help you log all the data that will help you chase mile after mile. You can also download training programs and workouts straight onto the wearable that will help you bag that 10K, half marathon, or whatever race that’s on the horizon.

Amazon Halo — $85.00

Keep things simple with the Amazon Halo: a simple band that stores all the data on your phone and nixes the watch face and SMS alerts. Membership to Amazon Halo costs $4 per month and lets you track your workouts, sleep, and recovery. One of the watches weirder (cooler?) features analyzes your voice to tell you how your tone sounds to others. A useful metric for the era of Zoom meetings…

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