Last year I purchased a Pebble smartwatch. It was great except for a couple things. The first issue was completely my fault for not doing my homework. You see one of the things I wanted to do with it was fire off quick responses to texts using the watch. Well because I have an iPhone, this was not possible. There was an app that was supposed to give me this functionality but it never worked for me. However this was well known and if I had paid attention I would have known it wouldn’t do that. Second, I had a weird issue with it dropping its connection to my phone. I would still get notifications but data (like current weather information) would not get pushed to the watch. This was frustrating but the support team at Pebble was great. There is even a new version of the watch’s firmware that I believe solved the issue.
I say believe because shortly after I upgraded my watch to the new firmware I actually ended up upgrading to the Pebble Time watch. It was on sale at Target for $50 off and there was also a 15% off addition Cartwheel coupon that brought it down even more. I also learned that thanks to a deal with AT&T (who just happens to be my phone company) Pebble had come up with a back door way to send text message replies.
I really like these watches. First, the battery lasts days, not hours like the Apple Watch. The screen is always on unlike the Apple Watch that turns on the screen when it thinks you’re looking. All I have to do when I’m typing this is look down and look. No need to raise the watch to turn on the screen. Getting notifications is great. I’m the type of person that when I hear my phone tell me there’s an email, I want to know from who. Now I don’t have to open my phone, I just look at my watch and then I know if it’s something I should look at that second (it usually isn’t).
I like that it tracks my steps/sleep. When I first got it I didn’t think that would be something I would like. But actually I think it’s pretty useful. It gives me a clear idea of what I already knew (I don’t move around as much as I should). But it’s good to have data to back that up.
While the color screen is nice, the colors are bright in direct light, it was not a huge factor in upgrading. I do find myself not choosing good black and white watch faces just because I have color and I want to use it. I’ve kind of settled on “Clear” right now as it provides all the basic info I want on the screen. I would like something different though, just not sure what. If you have any ideas I’d love to hear them.
It is really a great device. It keeps me connected and knowing what’s going on without having to always have my phone in my hand. The only feature it doesn’t have is a way to see (and possibly control) my Amazon Echo. I’d love to be able to get my shopping list on my watch so when I’m grocery shopping I don’t need to have my phone in my hand. But currently the iOS app doesn’t have a component for the Apple watch either so maybe Amazon doesn’t see that as a need. Other than that it does everything I want a smartwatch to do. And while a year ago I didn’t see a need for a smartwatch now I’m not sure I’d want to function without it.