Fidget spinners really are everywhere.
You probably own one, your kids probably own at least one of them. And now, as they have gone from normal pieces of plastic and ball bearings, to glow in the dark, to light-up versions, and now there are reports of the very latest versions of the new fidget spinners containing bluetooth-enabled speakers are... heating up, catching fire... and... exploding.
The reason why we are telling you this on a business blog - is well - you might just sell these - so read on and decide for yourself if they are worth the risk of carrying as a product to sell.
First a history lesson...
Fidget spinners have been around for a long time in fact, since 1993 when similar devices were invented. But it took until 2017 for fidget spinners to become a craze.
Catherine Hettinger is a chemical engineer by training, and was initially credited by some news sources to have been the inventor of the fidget spinner. While Hettinger filed a patent application for a "spinning toy" in 1993 and a patent was issued, she allowed the patent to lapse in 2005 after she could not find a commercial partner. In May 2017 a Bloomberg News article showed that Hettinger was not the inventor of the fidget spinner, and Hettinger agreed.
In an interview on May 4, 2017 on National Public Radio (NPR), Scott McCoskery described how he invented a metal spinning device in 2014 to cope with his own fidgeting in IT meetings and conference calls. In response to requests from an online community, he began selling the device online, he called it the Torqbar.
The New Danger: Bluetooth-enabled Fidget Spinners
Now... while there has been some issues with older plastic and ball bearing versions of the fidget spinners with the weights on each arm flying out and damaging their surrounds, some children choking on the weights and ball bearings coming loose, while dangerous, at least they are not as dangerous as what you are about to read...
These are Bluetooth-enabled fidget spinners which double up as mobile speakers with built in rechargable batteries are catching on fire.
The first incident happened in the United States of America in Alabama, with Kimberly Allums of Gardendale telling the news service on WBRC, “I was downstairs and all I heard was, ‘fire, fire’. The fidget spinner wasn’t smoking, it was in flames.” Why? It had been charging for less than 45 minutes, yet had over heated and set itself on fire.
The second incident happened again in America, in Michigan, Michelle Carr of Fenton telling WEYI news that... “They’re just simple, little things you spin and I love to play with them. I know there are tons of kids who want to go get them, but if you plug them in, just stay by and make sure it’s charged and it doesn’t catch fire.”
Reports out of the U.S. state that this isn’t a problem with fidget spinners per se, but with poorly made and poorly housed lithium-ion batteries. And, if have learnt nothing about batteries in the past few years (if a company the size of Samsung can get it wrong, as it did with the Galaxy Note 7, then...) the Chinese companies throwing these together to try to cash in on the craze, certainly can’t be trusted.
Let’s Ban Fidget Spinners?
Realistically, I'm not implying that all fidget spinners are dangerous. But just don’t sell, or buy the fidget spinners which have batteries in them for now, until this issue is fixed.
Do you own a fidget spinner?
Do you sell them in store?
If so, what made you buy them?
How quickly did you get bored of it?
If you haven’t bought a fidget spinner yet, why not?
What do you think about these reports of fidget spinners exploding?
Please let us know in the comments below!