Too hot to handle: Amazon halts hoverboard sales over growing safety concerns

Amazon loves its Fire products — Fire Tablet, Fire TV — but that doesn’t mean it’s ok with the products it sells actually catching fire. This morning, the headlines are ablaze over Amazon pulling so-called hoverboards from its website due to safety concerns.

Never mind that ‘hoverboard’ is a terribly in-apt name for the two-wheeled self-leveling motorized platform … thingies, the important thing is that  Amazon knows they’re a “hot” holiday gift this year — too hot, apparently — and  it’s concerned about increasing reports that  many of the products are prone to catch fire.

In fact, The Consumer Product Safety commission told NBC News last Thursday it is investigating at least 10 reports of fires allegedly caused by hoverboards. The problem is believed to be related to cheap Lithium-Ion rechargeable batteries used in many less-expensive products, which can overheat and potentially flame up if overcharged or damaged. But Amazon isn’t taking any chances, it’s also pulled many Swagway brand hoverboards, despite the brand having been reliable in the past.

Earlier this month, the UK seized over 90% of hoverboards imported into the country due to fear of explosion, and several airlines have outright banned them as well. So, if you’re still thinking of picking one up as a gift this year, we suggest spending more than $800, because it’s the cheap knockoffs of the originals that seem to be causing the most problems. And if you insist on rolling the dice on an el-cheapo version, maybe don’t stick it directly under the tree, because that just seems like a recipe for holiday disaster.

Finally, it wouldn’t be a day in tech news without something drone-related in the headlines, and today, we’ve got video footage proving that the rumors Japan plans to catch unruly drones with nets is totally true.

In the video we see a large drone armed with nothing but net chase down a smaller quadcopter and totally catch it like some kinda … Spiderman-vigilante-justice drone or something. I mean, at least they aren’t using firearms. But can you just imagine a fleet of buzzing drones flying around for the sole purpose of making sure other drones aren’t buzzing around?

When we heard Japan was going to fight drones with drones, we collectively nodded our heads and said, “yeah, that sounds about right.” But something about seeing it actually happen is just so … ahhhh, Japan, we love you. Be sure to check out the footage above.

As always you’ll find more about these stories and all the latest tech news at Digital That’s it for DT daily today, we’ll see ya tomorrow.


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