A few short years ago, a product came on the market that I got excited about. The product utilized ePaper, could go a week between charges and was programmable. Better yet, it was ‘crowd funded.’ The product took off, initially, and raised a lot of money from Kickstarter. That product, the Pebble Smartwatch, was a successful kickstarter project, probably the most successful of any from that site.
Last year, I finally got one. I like it a lot. The problem, though, was my smartphone. I use a Windows Mobile 10 device and there is no official app from Pebble. Eventually, someone developed a nice Pebble watch app for my favorite smartphone operating system. For the last few months, I’ve been very happy with this setup: I see my notifications, calls, email, etc. on my watch, I don’t need to pull the phone out. Great.
The app even works with some of the back end plumbing from Pebble. Nice. I get weather and some other things. Very cool.
Last week (December of 2016) I see a rumor that Fitbit was purchasing Pebble. I think, GREAT! My favorite smartwatch will get a much needed boost from an established company, that is also Windows Mobile friendly. Awesome. I may even get the new Pebble 2! How sweet is that?
Turns out, it is bitter.
Fitbit did, in fact, buy Pebble. BUT…they only bought the services and software, NOT the hardware. So, Pebble is now history. There is no word on when the services will cease. The watch will still work with phones, but the stuff that made it special, the heart of Pebble, will be going away.
No more new watches. Fitbit did not want the hardware. Nor did they want about sixty percent of the employees either.
I now have one more piece of hardware that is orphaned. Man, my ability to choose platforms is horrible.
Zune, Windows Phone/Mobile, Palm OS, webOS for Palm, Vista, Windows 8, CED Video Disc, LaserDisk, HD-DVD, Pontiac…and, now…Pebble. Wow. What a record, huh?
So, RIP, Pebble. It was nice while it lasted.