When the time came to unveil its second generation smartwatch, Pebble returned to the crowdfunding site where everything began. Setting the bar low, the company only wanted $500,000 to call the Pebble Time project, the name of its new watch, a success. Within half an hour, it had already reached a million dollars. Now the project sits over $10.5 million with 29 days left to go.
Can a grown-up company return to the kiddie pool of Kickstarter funding to help with its new product? Of course it can - this is how development works now! This morning the makers of Pebble announced Pebble Time, the company's second generation of Pebble hardware, launching exclusively through a Kickstarter funding campaign (like the record-breaking original two years ago). The company hit its modest $500,000 goal less than half an hour after posting the page.
You have seen the LG Watch Urbane in promo pictures along with its announcement, but you were probably still wondering if the watch really looks that good from all angles. Well, it does. Exhibit A:
Sexy! With the G Watch R, LG pulled off a watch that looks sporty and cool — mine always turns heads because people never realize it's a smartwatch until it starts buzzing and I interact with the screen. But the Urbane is taking it to another level of class and sophistication.
Pebble's website is currently home to a big countdown clock that is tracking the hours between now and 10AM EST tomorrow, February 24th. At that time, the company is expected to unveil information about new hardware and software.
Today we've caught a glimpse of both. The company briefly hosted this image on its servers before taking it back down.
The image shows a black, rounder Pebble with a color display. The four buttons used to navigate the on-screen interface—one on the left and three on the right—remain present on this updated model.
This weekend's poll asks a simple question, but it's an interesting one nonetheless, I think: do you prefer your smartwatch round or square?
The Moto 360 and G Watch R remain the only announced Wear devices with round displays. And, despite their coolness, circles have their downsides - they're unabashedly less efficient when displaying text, especially in a computing world that has been designed around quadrilaterals since the earliest monitors; there are so many interfaces that simply aren't optimized for a circle.
You might not know it if you don't regularly peruse the less-traveled sections of your local electronics store, but Garmin and its competitors have been making impressively sophisticated GPS watches for years. They only escaped the "smartwatch" label because the buzzword hadn't been invented yet. Now Garmin, like Timex, is approaching the smartwatch from the other end, adding more and more features onto a design that's been present for quite a while.
This year's Consumer Electronics Show will kick off next week, and many tech companies are ready to show off their gadgets. Alcatel OneTouch plans to attract attention on the show floor with its line of affordable phones and watches. But this time the price isn't the biggest draw.
The Alcatel OneTouch PIXI 3 series of handsets offer screens ranging from 3.5 to 5 inches. The smallest will only support 3G, while the 4", 4.5", and 5" options should handle 4G LTE as well.
This weekend's poll is another throwback, but this one's just a couple months out of its one-year anniversary, having been asked back in October of 2013. This year's poll options will be a little different, as the number of new crowdfunded smartwatches seems to be slowing a bit (especially in terms of media coverage), and smartwatches themselves are much more widely available than they were a year ago.
Last year, we saw just over 20% of you answer that you owned a smartwatch.
Word has hit the street that the Asus ZenWatch will launch in the US on November 9th. Two days from now shoppers reportedly will be able to pick one up from Best Buy for $199.99, with Play Store availability coming at some point after.
The ZenWatch is a peculiar Wear device. It's square, but unlike the LG G Watch or the Samsung Gear Live, it tries to look more like a traditional accessory than a tech gadget.
Android Wear is here, and with it, the second wave of major smartwatches from OEMs are arriving. The G Watch R is the first such device likely to be released, though Sony's Smartwatch 3 will likely be arriving soon as well, as well as ASUS' ZenWatch.
The general consensus on smartwatch pricing to date from OEMs seems to be around $250 - but how much would you really be willing to pay for a smartwatch that was stylish, functional, and practical?