Pebble watch now shipping to early backers, as iPhone app is released

The folks behind the Bluetooth-connected Pebble smart watch have announced that the first batch has begun shipping to the first 500 people who backed the company on Kickstarter. Of the red, white, black, orange and grey colour options, only the black is shipping for now.

We first got our first look at the Pebble at CES 2013 for some serious hands-on time, and were impressed with what we saw. The Pebble allows for users to not only see the time, but also to get notifications on text messages, emails, calls and more.

Priced at $150, the Pebble has been under the watch of watch fanatics since the time it first went on Kickstarter last spring to begin raising money to make the product concept a reality.

It didn't take the Pebble watch - which is capable of full iPhone and Android connectivity - long to raise money. Total funding for the project reached $10.2 million. Now that it has begun shipping, the folks at Pebble say it will be sent out to customers in the order they funded.

The first batch of orders only sits at 500, and it was supposed to be more, but some watch units were held up by documentation at the airport, according to Pebble. It's worth noting that mass production has gone into full swing, with 800-1,000 Pebbles being manufactured on a daily basis.

In our hands-on time with the watch, we found it to be feature packed and a very cool, customisable wrist accessory. We hope to sit-down and review it in-depth soon.

Along with the fact shipping has begun, Pebble's iOS app has also hit the App Store, first noted by The Next Web. The free app allows Pebble owners to change the watch faces, notify users of a software update, sends ping test messages to a Pebble, and can troubleshoot issues. The Android app is also expected to hit Google Play on 24 January.

A watch face SDK will be available to developers soon, allowing them to get crafty with their own creations. We found the interchangeability of watch faces to be a fairly cool feature.

Lastly, Pebble has given itself the challenge of cranking out software updates every two to three weeks. It will be interesting to see how the first batch of users like the watch.

Did any of you order a Pebble?



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