The world’s largest fitness bracelets accused of defrauding users

False advertising

In the United States filed a lawsuit against the company Fitbit, produces fitness bracelets. The suit authors argue that the manufacturer deliberately misled them, saying in advertising that its devices are equipped with sensors of high accuracy measurement of the pulse, so that they can be used during training for the heart rate.

In fact, fitness bracelets Fitbit measured pulse is so inaccurate that it can lead to overtraining and excessive load on the heart.

Technology PurePulse

Fitbit line includes several models of devices. More expensive ones are the Surge, Blaze and Charge HR, because they realized PurePulse technology. According to the manufacturer, it allows you to accurately measure the pulse in order to use the device during training.

PurePulse technology is based on photopletismography. The sensor contains two LEDs and a photocell. The LEDs show through the skin to the blood vessels, while the photocell detects the change in optical density. The optical density is converted to a further pulse rate.

This technology is considered to be more reliable than the measurement of skin resistance in some simpler devices like the Jawbone. However, this assumption was refuted in a study commissioned by the authors claim.


The study involved 22 men and 21 women (43 people). They put two fitness tracker Fitbit both medical sensor BioHarness from the company Zephyr Technology, affixed to the chest. Within 65 minutes they performed a series of physical exercises, about the same as shown in the Fitbit advertising: brisk walking, jogging on the treadmill, Wake up the stairs, jumping rope. Measurements were also carried out during the warm-up (when the test participants made fast movements) and at rest while sitting and standing.

As it turned out, when the load increases to the average values ​​and deviation higher on fitness tracker Fitbit was 20 beats per minute, compared with the sensor BioHarness. At the conclusion of the study states that the Fitbit device “does not provide useful information about a heartbeat.”

health threat

The claim to the Fitbit is hardly a fad consumers. The company advertises its device as auxiliary tools during training. However, the accuracy of heart rate measurement is not only significantly different from the actual values, it can be harmful to health. For example, the recommended heartbeat interval when burning fat being from 140 to 150 heartbeats per minute. The frequency of 170 strokes would be harmful to the heart.

Not the first lawsuit

This is not the first lawsuit against the Fitbit. In 2014, the company’s devices caused irritation on the skin of users. Sow it as a producer has received a complaint about this nearly 10 thousand. Users, it was forced to withdraw about 1 million bracelets. several lawsuits have been filed to the company later with the requirement to compensate the damage caused. Furthermore, consumers have complained that the vendor is not well informed about their return to the program, so that they know about it much later.

The largest manufacturer of wearable electronics

American Fitbit is the largest manufacturer of wearable electronics. According to IDC, in I quarter 2016 the company has put on the world market of 4.8 million units. For comparison, Apple has set for the same time, 1.5 million “smart” watches Watch. According to statistics, the Fitbit occupies 29.4% of the world market of portable devices. During the year the company increased its supply by 1 million gadgets. Second place goes to Xiaomi, and Apple - the third. The top producers are also included Garmin (fourth place), Samsung and BBK (the latter two shared fifth place).

25 May 2016

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