If materially false or misleading statements make your blood boil, the FitBit on your wrist may not detect it.
At least, that's the allegation of plaintiffs in the FitBit securities litigation. According to plaintiffs in a conumer class action, researchers from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona attached FitBits and EKGs to 43 people and found that the FitBit sensors were off by 19 beats per minute, on average. Plaintiffs in an unrelated securities action used the allegations in the consumer complaint to argue that FitBit failed to disclose material facts about its products and in the process artificially inflated the price of its securities. Defendants disputed the claims in both cases, and were not pleased that the non-peer-reviewed study was, in fact, commissioned by the plaintiffs in the consumer action.
"We stand behind our heart-rate monitoring technology and all our products," FitBit said in an announcement at the time, "and continue to believe the plaintiffs’ allegations do not have any merit. We are vigorously defending against these claims, and will resist any attempts by the plaintiffs’ lawyers to leverage a settlement...”
As anyone who ever strapped on a FitBit and made a similar commitment can tell you, it's hard to stay vigorous. And so, two years after the securities lawsuit was launched, FitBit has settled for $33 million. They continue to deny the allegations, and continue to fight on in the consumer action.