By now you have more then likely heard about the amazing new smart watch known simply as pebble. But very few people have actually had the chance to hold one if they didn’t attend CES. We at FSM however, have received one of our pebbles, pre-ordered via kickstarter, and felt you lovely people might be interested in having a look at it.
First off, let me just say that my overall first impression is far better than anything I have haver received as a 1.0 kickstarter backer reward. The packaging is top notch and well thought out, the documentation is executed well, and the build quality of this little guy is well beyond my expectations.
If this was just a watch, it would be a nice little watch. This however is not just a watch. Far from it actually. This is the birth of a wrist based platform that, with the right developers behind it, could really add up to something spectacular. Out of the box, at the moment, it really doesn’t do much, but the functions it already has are pretty nifty. Some of these stock functions include getting notifications on your wrist( for things like apps, phone calls, emails), vibration alerts, silent vibration based alarm clock, and of coarse a clock… it is a watch after all.
This is obviously just the surface of what could be vast deep ocean of content and apps as the SDK and community develops. There are already apps in the works to do everything from tracking your steps, to reading ebooks, the latter of which sounds a bit odd… but Ill withhold judgement on that till I see it and can mock it properly.
The watch itself is molded plastic with an eink display. Its waterproof up to 5 atmospheres of pressure, meaning you can go snorkeling with it if you choose, let alone wear it in the shower. Imagine swimming in a beautiful reef, admiring the pretty fish… and you get a buzz on your wrist to tell you FSM just posted a new product review from your RSS feed. I don’t know about you, but thats cool as hell.
It includes a nifty accelerometer that when you flick your wrist lights up the screen for easy low light viewing. This will also be useful for fitness apps and such as well, but for now the flick thing is pretty cool (like bow ties).
The battery will last up to two weeks, and charges completely in a little under two hours. The charging cable itself is magnetic and reminiscent of the iconic charging solution we find on our MacBooks. Its also bluetooth 4.0 compatible, for a nice low energy connection between the watch and your phone.
A few small things of note. On iOS for whatever reason, the only way for app notifications to make it to the watch at this point is to turn on alert notifications (as opposed to default banner style) on for that particular app. Frankly, that kind of sucks… because well, alert popups are a tad on the annoying side. I guess the perk here is that at least it gives you some control over what notifications make it to the watch. This does not include things like iMessage, phone, and mail apps however.
All in all, Im really excited about this little shiny peace of plastic. It has great potential as a product and a platform, and frankly is just cool. If you backed it on kickstarter, take heart, its coming very soon. If you didn’t, go check out getpebble.com and pre-order one for yourself.