Amazon on Wednesday announced that it was shutting down its Halo Health division – a service dedicated to helping customers improve their individual health and wellness. The e-commerce giant also plans to lay off portions of the Halo team.
Since its launch in August 2020, Amazon Halo has released a total of three products, namely the wearable fitness tracker Halo Band without a screen, followed by Halo View with a screen, and the Halo Rise, a bedside sleep tracker. All these products have already been pulled from Amazon’s digital storefront as well as a bunch of Amazon Halo accessory bands.
“We have made the difficult decision to wind down the Halo program, which will result in role reductions,” Melissa Cha, Vice President of Amazon’s smart home and health business, wrote in the internal memo sent to its staffers, which was obtained by The Verge.
“More recently, Halo has faced significant headwinds, including an increasingly crowded segment and an uncertain economic environment. Although our customers love many aspects of Halo, we must prioritize resources and maximize benefits to customers and the long-term health of the business.”
In a notice sent out to Halo customers, Amazon informed them that it will stop supporting Halo devices and the Halo app, effective July 31, 2023. It also notified the customers about layoffs and full refunds on customer purchases made in the past 12 months.
Amazon will stop supporting Halo devices and the Halo app on July 31. Users can delete their Halo health data from the app, and any remaining data will be deleted after Aug. 1, the company said.
“At Amazon, we think big, experiment, and invest in new ideas like Amazon Halo in our efforts to delight customers. While we are proud of what we built, we recently made the difficult decision to stop supporting Amazon Halo effective July 31, 2023,” the company wrote in the email sent to customers.
The company informed its Halo customers that in the coming weeks, Amazon will fully refund purchase(s) that have been made by them in the preceding 12 months of Amazon Halo View, Amazon Halo Band, Amazon Halo Rise, and Amazon Halo accessory bands.
Further, any unused prepaid Halo subscription fees will be refunded to the customer’s original payment method. In addition, if the customer has a paid subscription, they will no longer be charged the monthly subscription fee, effective April 26, 2023. Customers do not need to take any additional steps in this matter.
Starting August 1, 2023, Amazon Halo devices, and the Amazon Halo app, will no longer function and the remaining Halo health data will be deleted after the said date. However, if the customers wish to download or delete their Halo health data, they can do so by going to the Settings page in the app.
The e-commerce giant also informed users to save scan images to a phone’s camera roll and encouraged them to recycle the hardware.
“If you want to save your scan images to your phone’s Camera Roll, open the individual scan image, click the button next to the camera icon, and select “Save images to phone,” the company added.
“We encourage you to recycle your Amazon Halo device and accessories through the Amazon Recycling Program—Amazon covers the costs associated with shipping and recycling your devices and accessories.”
Coming to news of layoffs, Amazon has already notified its impacted employees in the U.S. and Canada. For employees who are impacted by the decision, the company will be offering packages that include a separation payment, transitional health insurance benefits, and external job placement support.