Fitbit, the maker of popular activity and fitness trackers, has officially acquired Pebble. The deal was finalized this morning, both companies have said.
The acquisition includes all of Pebble’s software assets, but excludes any hardware. Yup, that’s right—looks like the Pebble smartwatch is officially dead.
“Due to various factors, Pebble is no longer able to operate as an independent entity,” the company said. “We have made the tough decision to shut down the company and no longer manufacture Pebble devices.”
Fitbit is set to acquire troubled smartwatch-maker Pebble, according to a report from The Information. The deal is said to be mainly about the company’s intellectual property and software, and will likely result in the end of Pebble hardware.
In a subsequent report, TechCrunch says a source close to the startup pegged the deal in the neighborhood of $34 to $40 million, and it will just barely cover its debts. In the past, it was rumored Pebble received offers as high as $740 million.
Those who are using a Pebble smartwatch rather than Apple’s own Apple Watch as an accessory for their iPhone are limited in features, but with a new jailbreak tweak dubbed TextSender for Pebble, there is at least some hope for extended functionality.
TextSender for Pebble will, as the name implies, allow those with a Pebble smartwatch to send text messages from their watch via their iPhone.
Smartwatch and wearable devices startup Pebble on Tuesday unveiled three new devices: a second-generation Pebble, dubbed the Pebble 2, a new version of the Pebble Time and the Core, a pocket computer for runners wit built-in cellular connectivity.
After being introduced back in February and a Round version being unveiled in September, the original Pebble Time is already on sale. This comes at an interesting time, as the typical holiday shopping season won’t start for about three weeks.
On Pebble’s website, you can get the original edition of the Pebble Time for just $149.99 for a limited time, down 25% from its usual $199.99 price. If you’ve been looking to get a smartwatch and are wanting to test the waters, this is a pretty good offer. However, there is something interesting about the timing of the deal.
Pebble on Wednesday announced a new addition to its smartwatch lineup called the Pebble Time Round. As the name suggests, the device sports a round face, and the company is billing it as “the world’s lightest and thinnest smartwatch.”
At 7.5mm thin, with a weight of just 28 grams, this may very well be true, but the size reduction comes at a steep cost: battery life. While Pebble watches are typically known for near-week-long battery life, the Round only lasts about 2 days.
Pebble is teasing a new product launch on Wednesday, September 23, at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern Time. The countdown timer on the Pebble website invites fans to register their interest in order to “see what’s next”.
Although Pebble has been feeling the heat following the April 205 Apple Watch launch, the startup has managed to roll out the new Pebble Time smartwatch lineup while releasing a few software updates for the original Pebble.
Pebble’s new ‘Time’ smartwatch has begun shipping to early Kickstarter backers, but the iOS companion app that allows users to connect the device to an iPhone is no where to be found. It appears the app is stuck in limbo in Apple’s review process.
In an update posted to their Kickstarter page today, Pebble said that its Pebble Time app has been showing a status of ‘In Review’ since May 22nd and it’s given no indication on what is taking so long. The typical review process lasts around 7-10 days.
No, I don’t mean Pebble is in trouble because the most obvious choice when looking to buy a smartwatch is now Apple Watch. Pebble is in trouble because despite the incredible success of its latest Kickstarter campaign, the company is having a hard time, financially speaking.
After announcing new Pebble Time models featuring a color e-paper screen, built-in mic, an enhanced software and other improvements last week, Pebble Technology today took the wraps off a higher-end Time Steel model. Featureing a face made of machined stainless steel protected by Gorilla Glass, the Steel supports two watch straps, one made of leather and another of stainless steel.
Compared to the regular Pebble Time, the Steel model is one millimeter thicker and has 10 days’ worth of battery life. By comparison, the Time has a weeklong battery. The Steel edition will be available in three metallic finishes: silver, gold and black.