Pebble fans have been faithfully following each step of the breakout smartwatch since it set almost every Kickstarter record ever. While most of the big news has died down, that doesn't mean the development team is on a break. To speed up the process of getting new features and bug fixes out to eager users, Pebble is opening up an official beta channel through the Play Store. These betas are technically for the Pebble companion app, but since the app also installs firmware updates on the watch, it's likely that you'll be able to get in on all of the new features.

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Opting in to receive beta updates for Pebble is a lot like any other beta sign-up on Google Play. The one notable difference is that Pebble chose to use Google Groups instead of a Google+ Community to act as its home base for discussion. If you're ready to jump on the beta bus, first join the Pebble Android Beta Group, then opt-in on the Play Store page. It may take a little while for the Play Store to register your updated status, but there should be an update to v2.0.16 waiting for you soon enough.

Here is the changelog for v2.0.16:

  • Adds an improved user interface for managing the connection to your Pebble
  • Adds support for automatically changing the color of the Pebble graphics based on the color of the connected Pebble
  • Fixes a bug where the time on the Pebble would not update when the phone's time was updated
  • Various bug fixes and stability improvements

As always, remember that the apps distributed through beta channels are generally not as thoroughly tested or as stable as the regular channels, so you may experience some additional complications. It's still usually worth some added frustration to gain early access to new features and try out the latest bug fixes, especially for enthusiasts and developers.

Source: Pebble Developer Blog