Fitbit is replacing some Sense smartwatches over ECG issue

Fitbit is replacing some of its Fitbit Sense smartwatches, due to a problem with the ECG sensor.

The company has sent emails out to users informing them that its systems have detected an issue with the ECG, and it will replace the device free of charge.

But the mail out has caused confusion among users, and there are plenty of sceptical customers on the Fitbit Support thread concerned whether the request is legit.

The email asks users for personal address details and outlines that users will to return their Fitbit Sense via mail, and be sent a new device. So it’s little wonder that’s left many users worried the process is some kind of scam.

But the emails are legit, and a Fitbit spokesperson has confirmed to The Verge that around 900 units are affected – and that the issue causes readings not to be taken, and return an “inconclusive” result.

Fitbit said in a statement:

“We have found an issue in a very limited subset of our initial Fitbit Sense shipments – a few hundred devices globally – that could cause the ECG App to default to an ‘Inconclusive’ result during readings.

“We are able to identify the impacted devices upon set up and are immediately reaching out to these users to provide them with a new replacement device free of charge. No other Fitbit devices are impacted, and future shipments of Sense devices will not be affected by this issue.”

It’s clearly unusual that a hardware issue has affected such a small number of Sense devices, but it’s good that Fitbit has been able to isolate and identify the affected watches and reach out to those affected customers.

So if you’re a Fitbit Sense owner, check your email to see if you’re one of the unlucky 900. Also, if you feel that the ECG app has been particularly buggy or returning a lot of “inconclusive” results, it could be worth reaching out to Fitbit.

The Fitbit Sense got a great review in our testing, and we love the extra sensors and data it provides. And Fitbit OS 5.1 has also improved the device, offering new calling features and the ability to use Google Assistant on the wrist.

This article was amended on 9 Dec to clarify that this is not a recall.

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