Intel burned by Basis Peak users’ burns

Intel has issued a recall of all Basis Peak watches, one month after Basis stopped production of the watch. The reason, as was given for ending production, is the Peak overheats far too often.

Basis Peak owners are being warned to take off the watch, to avoid “burns or blisters on the skin surface”. Most owners aren’t effected, with only 0.2 percent of watches overheating, but Intel isn’t taking chances.

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Intel and Basis said in June that it was working on a fix for the overheating, but two months later, it appears the fix isn’t coming.

“We had hoped to update the software on your watch to address the problem,” said Intel senior vice president and general manager of the New Technology Group, Josh Walden. “Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we aren’t able to develop such a solution without completely compromising the experience.”

Intel is offering a full refund to Basis Peak customers, if they send in the watch, charger, and other accessories. Owners may keep the watch if they want, but the ability to sync data to a connected smartphone will terminate at the end of the year.

Not the first big wearables recall

The recall isn’t as large as the Fitbit Force recall in 2014, but Basis Peak may still lose a lot of valuable customers, if it cannot launch a new watch soon.

Intel bought Basis for $100 million in 2014, but has not seen any major development from the firm post purchase. It still lags behind market leaders Fitbit and Jawbone and doesn’t have the same variety of watches.

The latest recall may force Intel to rethink its wearable strategy, possibly incorporating Basis more heavily into the company’s core business. We might see the brand removed from Intel’s products, depending on how much the brand is damaged after the recall.

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