Pebble smart watch will be available to backers on January 23rd

Daniel Bader

January 9, 2013 12:09pm

Pebble will be launching to its Kickstarter backers on January 23rd. Because of the limited 15,000-per-week manufacturing run, the entire allotment will take roughly 6-8 weeks to ship to backers.

It supports standard 22mm watch bands, but its band has been custom created for the watch face. Its screen is not e-ink, but is a variant of an LCD that has a refresh rate of 30fps. This allows it to actually render images and scrolling text smoothly. Because it has been created with sports in mind, it is light and extremely durable, made out of polycarbonate. This also applies to its water resistance, which is rated for 5 Atmospheres.

It will have a magnetic cable that prevents any unwieldy charging methods. It also has an ambient light sensor and magnetometer (for compass applications), both of which are not functional at the time of shipping, but it will be activated via an OTA software update. That is has Bluetooth 4.0 integration makes Pebble extremely future-proof, as most phones don’t even come with support for the low-power standard yet.

Pebble supports Android 2.3.3 and up, as well as iOS 5 and up. It does work better on Android 4.0+ and iOS 6+, but its backwards compatibility is appreciated.

There is a Cloud service, much like Facebook Connect. There will be a “Log In with Pebble” button available for webmasters to integrate with the push notification service.

Pebble’s interface has been optimized as much as possible for its black-and-white colour scheme. There are many watch faces available by default, but developers have been creating custom faces based on popular ones over time.

One of the coolest pieces of integration with Pebble is web service IFTTT (If This Then That), which can be customized to a very fine degree. You can also interface with the mobile app and download new watch faces as well as other apps that have been integrated with the device.

The company is committing to update Pebble every two to three weeks — “It’s an ongoing project,” says Eric Migicovsky — such as RunKeeper integration, which will come in the first or second update.

Developing…

  • JUST SAYING

    BB10 DEAD ON ARRIVAL

  • Radapple

    This article needs some editing….

  • David

    It’s LCD and not e-ink? What’s the battery consumption going to be like, then?

    • EvanKr

      I think it’s still 7 days, which is pretty goof even for a variant of LCD.

    • Jeremy

      It’s e-Paper which has been used by most of the cheap ebook readers for a while now. It still gets good battery life, but trades faster refresh rates for lower contrast.

  • Dan S

    I supported the Kickstarter its being released just when I’m about to ditch my iPhone for BlackBerry 10 phone. :(

  • kayn

    I really want one of these watches but I’m so glad that I didn’t contribute to the initial Kickstarter project given all of the shipping delays that have occurred. It just goes to show that the supply chain is just important as product itself.

  • 2z

    Not trying to troll, but I honestly think this company won’t be around much. I don’t see people adopting an e-ink phone, to me it just sounds gimiky and something you might buy then realize its impractical or pointless and never use again.

    • Kida

      E-ink PHONE? What are talking about?

    • Jeremy

      This isn’t a phone. It’s something to wear on your wrist to get a glance at what’s happening on your phone. This will be best for active people (running, skiing, etc) where you can keep your phone in your pocket but still get access to the stuff you need. There it’s going head-to-head with the Nike Plus watch which has been out for a year at the same price point (but that has built-in GPS though no real-time communication with your phone).

      It can also be good for remote control of your HTPC for geeks, etc. It’s a programmable watch that pairs with your phone. Lots of interesting applications.

  • CptnFalcon

    Variant of LCD? You mean the long lost monochrome displays of 10 years ago?

  • Brendan M

    The was and continues to be marketed as an “E-Paper Watch for iPhone and Android” on KS and GetPebble.com.

    What is your information about “LCD variant” based upon? I don’t think we’d be getting acceptable battery life of an LCD. I don’t want to recharge my watch daily. I would prefer monthly.