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Fitbit promises a fix for its period tracking issues

Fitbit’s recently launched period tracking functionality is attracting criticism from users who have noticed that it doesn’t allow them to log periods that are more than 10 days in length.

After complaints were raised, Fitbit confirmed to the BBC that “currently a period must be less than 11 days”. It said that users should make their voices heard by commenting on the company’s suggestions board.

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The functionality, which was added back in May, allows users to track their menstrual cycles. The software is then able to generate push notifications two days before the start of a period is expected. It also provides other information about fertility, for example.

All of this sounds like excellent and useful functionality, so it’s such a shame to see it launched in such a restrictive state.

In a statement sent to Trusted Reviews Fitbit said that it is, “working to expand period logging beyond 10 days in the future”. It added that it had based the design of the functionality off research that suggested that above 90% of people have periods that last 10 days or less.

A diverse need

Fitbit assured us that the company had “a full team of women involved in developing the feature”, after we questioned whether a more diverse team might have prevented the issue from arising in the first place.

Kotaku UK ran an excellent piece last year on ‘You’re in the Movies’, a motion-controlled game that used the Xbox 360’s Xbox Live Vision camera. The only problem was that, “no-one noticed the game struggled to work with black people”.

There are numerous other examples around of tech that was inadvertently released with issues that could easily have been avoided if only a more diverse range of people had worked on it. Check out this soap dispenser:

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Diversity in tech matters. It obviously matters because segregated workplaces are horrible whichever way you look at them, but the products produced by diverse teams are just plain better. Diverse viewpoints mean more creativity and better thought out ideas, and they mean products work for everyone.

What’s your favourite feature in the Fitbit app? Let us know @TrustedReviews. 

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