The Chicago Journal

1.7 million Fitbit smartwatches recalled due to burn hazard

Photo: Fitbit

The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced on Wednesday that Google-owned Fitbit is retracting 1.7 million smartwatches due to a possible burn hazard. 

Fitbit will be voluntarily recalling the Fitbit Ionic smartwatch models. The CPSC said that these contain a lithium-ion battery that may overheat and cause burns to consumers. They added that the recall affects one million devices sold in the United States and another 693,000 sold internationally.

According to CPSC, at least 174 reports from all over the world have reached Fitbit regarding the battery in the watch overheating, including 78 reports of burn injuries in the United States. Of the 78, there are two reports of third-degree burns and four reports of second-degree burns.

Spokesperson Andrea Holing confirmed the recall in a statement to CNN Business. She said the number of injury reports represented less than 0.01% of units sold.

“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,” Holing said. “These incidents are very rare and this voluntary recall does not impact other Fitbit smartwatches or trackers.”

In a statement on its website, Fitbit added that its Ionic smartwatches were introduced in 2017, and their production ceased in 2020.

Consumers who own a Fitbit Ionic watch are urged to stop using the device. The CPSC added that consumers will be refunded $299 after returning the device to Fitbit. Participating consumers will also be provided with a discount code for 40% off select Fitbit devices. 

In late 2019, Google announced plans to acquire Fitbit in a $2.1 billion deal, looking to compete with the Apple smartwatches. The acquisition was completed last year.