When I first put on a Pebble smartwatch shortly after it was made available at Best Buy, I was excited. The thought of being able to leave my phone in my coat pocket, or in another room, and receiving alerts on my wrist was very appealing. Quickly I realized the watch only lived up to half of the hype I had built up in my mind. As someone who switches back and forth between iOS and Android on a nearly weekly, sometimes daily, basis, it didn't take a long time for me to see there were plenty of shortcomings … Read more
Ah, 2013. The year Microsoft continued to be, well, Microsoft, everyone tried to get their mobile on, and Samsung tried to show the world that it's going to be king of wearable tech.
Yup, there were gaffes. There always are. We also saw the launch product for a now-failing platform (and failing company), and the company that wanted to the entire planet to phone Home. And who can forget our nation's Capitol: A stream of leaks that showed the world that, yes, Uncle Sam is watching every click you make, not to mention those of foreign dignitaries. And … Read more
Going beyond custom alerts for various events on your Pebble watch, one of the more fun uses for the Pebble smartwatch is the ability to create and use custom watch faces. Up until now, iOS users have had to rely on browsing watch faces using Safari. The process is a bit tedious and it's easy to forget where you saw a particular watch face. Enter MyPebbleFaces.
What started as a fan Web site to curate Pebble watch faces has turned into a free iOS app where iPhone users can browse available faces and install them directly on their watch. … Read more
One of the shortcomings of using a Pebble smartwatch with an iOS device previously, was the lack of full notification support. The only service that the watch truly supported was Messages. Other services required additional setup each and every single time the watch and iOS device were disconnected. It was anything but a great user experience.
With iOS 7 releasing new tools to developers, and with better support for Bluetooth devices and background apps, hopes were high that the Pebble team would be able to make the watch what many users so desperately wanted it to be.
Then, early in … Read more
Can software make the Pebble smartwatch better?
The patriarch of this generation of smartwatches isn't getting a face-lift before the end of this year. The black-and-white nontouch display and bare-bones geek charm of the original Pebble will remain. Instead, Pebble will get a bevy of software and app updates, along with a brand-new SDK that promises the types of apps we'd hoped would be on the Pebble when it was first announced.
iPhone owners finally get notifications galore The first big news is for iOS. The Pebble is getting a software update today for iOS 7 that finally … Read more
Despite all the promises, smartwatches remain an acquired taste. Yes, there's a market but one that largely caters to the likes of health junkies and early adopters.
Fitness bands are cheap and light but too minimalist. Samsung's Galaxy Gear is all brawn but lacks device compatibility and email support. And the Pebble, one of the first true-blue smartwatches, is still trying to build an app ecosystem the way that Google and Apple did for their smartphones. It's an uphill battle for Pebble, the smartwatch darling, and it won't get any easier when those tech titans join … Read more
I was going to write a story on two watches: the Samsung Galaxy Gear, and the Pebble watch. They represent opposite ends of the wearable spectrum: Big Tech, and indie power. Each is making a bid for your wrist, but in a very different way: budget vs. high-end, locked down to several devices vs. open to iOS and Android.
Then, along came the Fitbit Force.
I don't want to make too much of it, but the Force is a smartwatch, too, and perhaps the most disruptive kind. It also brings something new to the table that both bigger companies … Read more
Leaked from today's 404 episode:
- CNET's review of the Pebble Watch says it's a work in progress.
- Some of the winning projects from last weekend's Pebble hackaton at MIT.
- The sticky situation that delayed the Pebble Watch.
- Check out Eric's recent Pebble AMA on Reddit.
- Pebble smartwatch goes on sale at AT&T on September 27.
While several companies are jumping on the smartwatch bandwagon, it's not clear who exactly is buying these wearable picture-taking, texting, time-telling machines. Or, for that matter, if this wearable fad is here to stay.
A study released Thursday by consumer analytics firm On Device Research and telecoms analyst firm CCS Insight shows that many people have heard of smartwatches and other wearable technology, but ownership is still fairly low. The study's data is based on a survey of more than 1,500 smartphone owners in the US and UK.
"We are surprised by how many people are … Read more