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Snap is recalling and refunding every drone it ever sold

Snap is recalling and refunding every drone it ever sold


Snap sold 71,000 Pixy drone batteries (and thus, fewer than 71,000 drones).

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A yellow drone shaped like a rounded rectangle instead of exposed blades — it has translucent orange propellers within its boxy but thin frame.
The Snap Pixy.
Photo by Vjeran Pavic / The Verge

Snap gave up on its Pixy flying selfie camera drone after just four months, but it turns out the company sold under 71,000 drones — and now the company is recalling every one of those drones because their batteries pose a fire hazard. Yes, the entire drone is being recalled, not just the removable battery, likely because Snap doesn’t make those batteries anymore.

Snap and the US Consumer Product Safety Commission say you should “immediately stop using the Pixy Flying Camera, remove the battery and stop charging it” now that there have been four reports of the battery bulging, one fire, and one “minor injury.”

Then, you can get a full refund for the entire drone and / or any batteries you own — sounds like we’re talking at least $185 back to you, unless you bought it on sale. You don’t need a receipt: you can apply for the refund even if you got it as a gift.

To get that money, though, you’ll need to return the entire drone, minus the batteries. You can fill out a form at this link with your drone’s serial number. Snap says it’ll email you a prepaid return label if you do. You’ll need to find a safe way to dispose of the batteries yourself; Snap says you should NOT drop them at your local hardware stores or big box stores like Target; there’s a website here to help.

Diving into drones was an intriguing move for the company, which had also dabbled with hardware via its Snap Spectacles. Those, too, were largely about having a different perspective on capturing video for the platform, though the company’s also been looking into AR.

Snap CEO Evan Spiegel once suggested the market for drones was bigger than that for video-capturing glasses, but that was before the Pixy came out. I believe this is the first time we’ve heard sales numbers for the Pixy; the CPSC reports that the company sold “about 71,000” units, though the number of drones is fewer since that includes batteries sold separately.

Correction, 12:06PM ET: We briefly wrote that Snap recalled 71,000 drones, but it’s 71,000 batteries inclusive of drones — which means Snap sold fewer than 71,000 drones.

Correction, 2:28PM ET: We originally pointed out that hardware stores and big box locations accept batteries, but Snap is saying not to drop batteries in those collection boxes.