Some thoughts on the Pebble smart watch #

Four weeks on the wrist, and I’m all set to go Charlton Heston on you if you try to pry it off. The Pebble smartwatch cracks the challenge of the smartwatch, and while it’s not the final iteration of the wearable technology, the Pebble reminds me of the promise of the early Psion and Palm devices I used.

The Pebble reminds me of the early days of the PDA, with many limitations in the hardware and software being overcome by smart hacking. The limitations of size and interface are obvious, while others are down to the hardware design (the Pebble watch currently has space for just eight third party apps, be they watch faces or apps accessed from the Pebble menu). But the small Pebble team are doing their best to harness the community, get them involved, and improve the product through their efforts. That’s paying off.

Should you buy the Pebble? If you’re in the market for a smartwatch, it certainly has to be one of the watches to consider. Of the current watches on the market, it is the one that I would buy for myself. As for recommending it, anyone looking at the Pebble has to remember that it is on the cutting edge of wearable technology, and it’s not going to be perfect. But it’s the smartwatch that I feel has the most promise, will have the most development and support, and will never be a chore to charge and wear.

More in-depth thoughts over on my Forbes column.

2 Responses to “Some thoughts on the Pebble smart watch”

  1. Moof says:

    Glad you liked the Pebble.

    I’ve been using it now for a few months. With the pre-iOS7 behaviour it was a little too basic, but the new improved iOS 7 notifications integration it turns it into a much more useful device. It has lifted me from “disappointed” as a Kickstarter backer to “pleased”. I still don’t the the awesomeness that is the app ecosystem as that useful to me, possibly due to my iOS dependency, possibly because the API is still a bit young.

    The first time I turned on walking directions on google maps and had the notifications pop up on my wrist was a revelation. Receiving my whatsapp notifications the same way I got my text message ones was also great, if a little OTT on my wrist vibrations, I feel it’s missing a do not disturb mode, possibly.

    I think the next killer “app” for me would be to be able to automatically see next bus times in the bus stop I’m waiting up form just my wrist. But the ecosystem is not there yet.

  2. Ewan Spence says:

    What was that about a ‘Do not disturb’ mode? V1.4 arrives….