Nike and Apple just agreed to settle a class action lawsuit related to the popular Nike+ FuelBand fitness tracker. The lawsuit alleged that Nike and Apple sold the FuelBand despite knowing the calorie, steps and activity measurements were inaccurate. As a result of the settlement, Nike has agreed to pay out $25 to anyone in the US who purchased a FuelBand between Jan 2012 and June 2015 (up to $2.4 million in claims). Apple gets off scot-free although it sold the FuelBands up until March of this year.
A Little Background
The Nike+ FuelBand is an activity tracker worn on the wrist that was supposed to track physical activity (from exercise to everyday activities) and translate it to “Nike Fuel Points.” Users could set a daily goal and the FuelBand tracked progress towards the goal, lighting up from red to green once the goal was reached. The FuelBand could be synced to Apple iPhone, iPad and Android devices to monitor progress and also share with the Nike+ online community.
The simplified scoop
Nike and Apple just learned the hard way that no matter how big your brand, you can’t make unsubstantiated claims about the effectiveness of your product. This also raises doubts about the effectiveness of other popular fitness trackers and their measurements. According to Venture Beat, the Nike and Apple lawsuit exposes the dirty little secret of fitness trackers – that they are not that accurate after all. As wearables gain traction, companies will face increased scrutiny about the data they present to users. As a longtime user of a Polar heart rate monitor, I’m definitely now paying closer attention to the data it gives me.
Do you own a Nike+ FuelBand? Submit your claims here