If you haven’t heard, The Pebble watch was the most successful Kickstart project to date with over 68000 backers and raising funds of over 10million USD! The company behind the project is Pebble Technology, a team designing innovative and trendy smart watches to match the booming market of smartphones.
The Pebble watch syncs with iPhone and Android smartphones. On their Kickstart page, they claim it’s “the first watch built for the 21st century”. The watch is customizable; you can download apps and watch faces, or even design your own. The watch is made to seamlessly notify of incoming calls, text messages and emails from your phone – great for those whose phone is at the bottom of their bag, whose hands are otherwise occupied or for those just on the go.
The Pebble watch can also control your music and has been particularly targeted at those who wish to use their watch as a cycling and running tracker or even a golf rangefinder. The watch charges by USB, syncs via Bluetooth, and is estimated to have seven+ days of battery life. The backlit watch uses an e-paper display making it readable in all light conditions and has a scratch and shatter resistant lens with anti-glare optical coating.
The current price is set to be 150 USD and will be available in five colours; jet black, arctic white, cherry red, orange and grey. The only problem is… it’s not available yet!
The Kickstarter project reached its funding goal in May 2012 and the team were set to prepare the Pebble watch for mass production, first getting it on the wrists of eager backers who funded the project and then out into the market for everyone else to buy. In August, the team announced the watch would not be shipping until September.
However, September came and went and still the Pebble never made it to the factory line. The original ship date was based on a batch of 1000 watches but due to popular demand, it was increased to a first-time batch of 85000. The Pebble Technology team are regularly updating their website, providing an inside-look into their design and manufacture process. Many of their updates include insightful photos and videos detailing the holdbacks and developments. The Pebble watches are at an early pre-production test build and as exciting as it is to follow its journey, it doesn’t change the fact that those eager backers still have no Pebble watch, and nor do the public. It’s a real shame the watch won’t be one of this year’s most popular gifts this Christmas.
The latest update from the team was as follows:
“I want to re-iterate that Pebble is not in mass production (MP) yet. MP will start as soon as we eliminate any outstanding issues and complete the final Production Verification (PV) build. Based on the current schedule, we will start PV just before the end of December.”
“Nothing is more important to us than making sure that each Pebble is as awesome as possible, so every component of the watch (both aesthetic and functional) needs to be tested and inspected during the assembly process.”
Clearly, their commitment to innovation and quality can be admired and can be tracked fairly closely on their website. The design of the Pebble watch is fresh and pioneering; and certainly highly anticipated. Nonetheless, it might only be so long before gadget fans and their fast-paced schedules lose interest and find something else. That, or it’ll be Christmas 2013’s next best thing!