McDonald’s Happy Meal wearable rubs people the wrong way

McDonald’s has prematurely ended fitness tracker sales in the U.S. and Canada, which came inside the fast-food chain’s Happy Meal.

Intended as a way to get kids active, McDonald’s inadvertently caused a lot of parents to worry what was happening to their child’s skin. It received complaints from customers about skin irritation a few hours after the first day of sales. Within 24 hours, the fitness tracker was removed from all stores.

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A McDonald’s representative said the firm is investigating the issue, but we doubt the fitness tracker will return to Happy Meals anytime soon.

McDonald’s isn’t alone in suffering from skin irritation issues, for most of 2014 Fitbit struggled to fix problems with its Force tracker. Intel recently recalled all Basis Peak wearables as well, citing overheating issues.

McDonald’s wanted to capitalize on the Olympics

The wearable was built by the fast-food chain and manufactured in China. It had a pedometer inside to track steps and physical activity, but unlike the pervasive fitness trackers we are used to, the McDonald’s toy had no wireless connectivity.

McDonald’s had lined up the launch of the fitness tracker with the 2016 Rio Olympic games and summer break, two factors that should have more kids playing outside and doing physical activities.

It is a bit ironic that McDonald’s, a fast-food chain known for its high sugar and fat content, giving fitness trackers to kids. However, the company has tried for the past few years to change how its perceived by customers, adding fruit to its menu, improving the quality and sourcing of its food, and taking steps to reduce calories.

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