We keep being told that smart watches are to be the next big thing, and we’ve seen a few early attempts already. Samsung of course have their pretty bad Galaxy Gear, Motorola have their own efforts, and so do Sony. So far, the company that has seen the most praise for their smart watches is Pebble, a company who were a sensation on Kickstarter, and despite some incredibly long shipping times have become a big success story. Now, Pebble are offering the Pebble Steel, an upgrade to the original Pebble that comes at a $100 premium.
Pebble Steel: Specs
The Pebble Steel, as the name suggests, comes in black or brushed stainless steel, and features metal wristbands with a bonus leather band. The face of the watch itself is now metal, and the design is a little sleeker with subtle curves and less obvious buttons protruding from the sides. The plastic screen which has proved vulnerable on some people’s wrists has been replaced with Gorilla Glass – a welcome upgrade.
There’s also a 3-colour LED which indicates charging status, which Pebble says may be opened up to developers at some point in the future. If that is the case, expect a few Light Flow-type apps for the new feature.
In terms of the internals, the watch is unchanged, which in many ways is no bad thing. Later in the week, Pebble will be showing off more apps for the watch, and also finally showing the world its Pebble App Store which should be available to users at the end of the month. Those in the US can order the Pebble Steel from today, and orders will ship on the 28th.
Las Vegas, NV (January 6, 2014) – Pebble Steel, the premium watch for iOS and Android, is the newest addition to Pebble’s smartwatch family. Proudly announced today just in time for CES, Pebble Steel wraps everything users know and love about Pebble—clear ePaper display, week-long battery life, and waterproof design—into a slimmer, classic form factor. Available now in Black Matte or Brushed Stainless exclusively on getpebble.com for $249, worldwide shipments of Pebble Steel will begin January 28.
“With Pebble, we created an iconic, colorful, and sporty smartwatch,” says Product Evangelist Myriam Joire, “but we wanted to build something even more refined. Pebble Steel cranks the style dial to 11.”
Pebble Steel unites modern technology and timeless design, coming in two finishes: Brushed Stainless and Black Matte. All models are bundled with both a matching metal band and a black leather strap. The Black Matte Pebble Steel is crafted using a process called Physical Vapor Deposition to provide a tactile, deep black finish that’s also ultra-durable. Pebble Steel’s ePaper display is protected by a Corning Gorilla Glass lens with an oleophobic, anti-fingerprint coating. The housing also subtly incorporates a RGB LED light to indicate charge status. Like the original Pebble, Pebble Steel is waterproof up to 5 ATM.
“Our mission is clear,” says CEO Eric Migicovsky. “Create the gold standard for wearables that mesh perfectly with your everyday life, and build the fundamental ecosystem and platform for these devices.”
During CES 2014, Pebble partners Pandora, iControl, and Mercedes-Benz will feature Pebble Steel in hands-on demos of their new Pebble app integrations. These pioneering brands join ESPN, Yelp, Foursquare, and GoPro as part of Pebble’s growing app family, ready to bring tiny moments of awesome to Pebblers’ wrists every day.