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June 20, 2015

Pebble Steel Smartwatch Review

by GFR2

Where to start….well, after various external factors meant that I wasn’t able to use my gym membership, having a fitness tracker such as the Charge HR became a little redundant as I’d really only use it for telling the time and counting steps, so I gave that to my other half who is still hitting the gym and burning her calories.

So now having a naked wrist after several months felt very odd so I wanted something to replace it, the obvious was an Apple iWatch (as per my gadget wish list) but as I’ve yet to win big on the lottery I decided to have a look around.  It came down to a couple of models, Microsoft’s Band or the Pebble Smartwatch (Original or Steel).

The band has a short battery life but much better screen, the Pebble has a e-ink screen and better battery life, so I chose the Pebble.  I then had to decide between the Original or Steel – they are same tech but the strap and housing are different, I went for the smaller but heavier Steel.


Now this is normally where I write my first impressions and whats in the box, sadly this review differs, why? Well I opened the box looking forward to spending my evening playing with said new piece of tech, removed the screen protector that said hold a button to power on, held a button and……..nothing, absolutely nothing!

Being logical I thought maybe this had been sat in a warehouse for a while and the battery was flat, so I plug the charger in and shortly later the screen kicks into life (albeit rather dim), I then follow the instructions for pairing, setting up notifications etc and all went well, the unit sat there charging away and Iwent to bed.

This morning I get up and go to play with my new toy only to find its dead, not sleeping, not hungover from a heavy night but dead.  Out comes the internet and a quick search shows this to be a stupidly common issue but on the first release (Could it really have been sat in a warehouse that long???), there are a couple of suggested fixes of which none worked.  So I’ve come back from returning the watch with a slight sadness as I can’t play with my new toy but at least I get to write a review about it.  They did offer to swap it, but a dead unit out of the box doesn’t inspire me!

So overall, I’m disappointed in this, but the next question is – Do I buy a Microsoft Band, wait a while until the Pebble Time comes out or save and buy an Apple iWatch?

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