Over the last few months, I’ve heard more and more reports that Microsoft may have fortified newer Band 2’s to better protect against rips and tears.
These reports have come from customers of both Best Buy and the physical Microsoft Stores who have had to swap torn Bands. Employees helping with the exchange have mentioned that there’s a special Lot Number that has been fortified with either new or thicker material. It’s still unclear and I’m checking into it, however, the most recent report has an employee saying that this is the new lot, and he hasn't seen any from lot 16 come back with that issue.
The Lot Number isn’t included on the Band clasp itself, but only on the retail box. Here’s my latest replacement an example:
Apparently, the Lot Number is deciphered in this way…
1550 = Year: 2015, Week: 50
So, essentially, my latest replacement was manufactured the 50th week of 2015 and doesn’t fall within the range of Bands reportedly fortified against tears. I guess I can expect mine to need replacement again in the future.
The fixed range was supposedly manufactured starting sometime in February, which would give it a Lot Number like 16XX. If you purchased your Band 2 with a Lot Number of 1608 or later, I’d like to hear if you’ve had any material issues. Let me know.
UPDATE: I did receive word back on this and while its not much, it does say something. The response was...
And, that comment can be attributed to a "Microsoft spokesperson" - per the reply. Usually a "no comment" could mean a couple things. One, the person that was asked simply doesn't know and will be spending the rest of the day trying to figure it out them self. Secondly, the person that was asked does know something, but isn't allowed to say - yet. If I were making assumptions, I'd say there's a very good chance that Microsoft has done, or will do, something to solve the weakness in the Band's straps. However, also keep in mind, that acceptance that this is an actual issue, could also lead to a product recall. I don't believe the Microsoft Band category is revenue rich enough that it can withstand the cost of a recall. So, "no comment" is good enough for me - for now.