Back in 2012 a 25 year old American called Eric Migicovsky had a concept of a watch that could display messages from a smartphone.
He took the idea to crowdfunding site Kickstarter, and what transpired was unbelievable. What turned into a request for $100’000 ended up raising $10.2 million (the $100’000 target was met within 2 hours) in an unprecedented show of support by 68,928 members of the general public, and the Pebble Smartwatch was born.
In 2014 Pebble released their second generation smartwatch the Pebble Steel.
Fast forward again to February 2015 and Pebble announced the Pebble Time, their third generation smartwatch was to be released, however unlike the second one they decided to return to Kickstarter to fund the project.
This time around though they were asking for $500’000 in the hope that they were still held in high regard from last time. There’s fears didn’t last long as the half million dollar target was met in a mere 17 minuets! After 48 hours an unbelievable $10.3 million had been pledged, and no with a few hours to go the final total looks to be about to top $20 million, which is a record in itself.
In all reality it wasn’t really a gamble, as since the original watch was released they have sold more than one million of the watches.
The original Pebble wasn't even really a "smartwatch" when it debuted but it revolutionised wearables and set the standard for future smartwatches to come.
The Pebble Steel further cemented the company's standing as a legit smartwatch competitor by creating a sleeker model, but it didn't fully impress with usage.
Now, with Pebble Time, it seems like the public cries were heard, and most issues with the previous watches have been ironed out.
As far as specs go the Pebble Time will have 64KB of RAM on board and an ARM Cortex M4 CPU running at 100Mhz, an upgrade from the original Pebble's M3. The additional processing power is essential in supporting a new microphone feature.
Four sensors built are built into the smartwatch, including a 3 axis accelerometer, 3D compass, ambient light sensor and the aforementioned microphone.
Pebbles are known for outstanding battery life and the Time is no exception. Like the previously used e-ink displays, the new colour e-paper screen helps reduce power consumption, allowing the battery to last for seven days before the next recharge.
The e-paper interface also utilizes a colour palette that's limited to 64 colours, yet it looks like it will be far easier to read than the usual smartwatch displays. The company also kept the physical buttons opposed to incorporating touchscreen capabilities.
Bluetooth is of course included in the Time package with range supposedly better than the other Pebbles, reaching up to 50 meters or more.
It's been noted the Time is similar in design to the Steel but even better. At just 9.5mm, it's 20% thinner than the original Pebble.
Similar to the Samsung Gear S, the scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass watch body will be curved, though it will be much smaller and fit more comfortably on the wrist. The bezel is made of stainless steel and will have three different watch case colors - black, red and white - with a black bezel for the former two colors and silver for the latter.
The Time will also come with a silicone watch band in the same colours above to match the watch case, but any 22mm strap can be swapped in thanks to a quick release pin.
As crazy as this sounds it seems like the Pebble Time will be seriously giving the Apple iWatch a run for it’s money.
To find out more please head on over to their Kickstarter page here, and check out their short video launching the project below.