The destiny of the once-beloved Pebble smartwatch ecosystem has been unsure since Fitbit purchased the corporate in 2016 for round $40 million. Right this moment, Fitbit introduced a extra definitive timeline for assist of Pebble units and software program: Fitbit will prolong its assist of the Pebble ecosystem, together with units, software program, and boards, till June 30, 2018.
“Throughout this time, we invite the Pebble group to discover how acquainted highlights from the Pebble ecosystem are evolving on the Fitbit platform, from apps and clock faces to options and experiences,” the corporate’s weblog put up states.
Fitbit’s invitation is a hopeful one for the corporate itself. After the buyout, members of the Pebble workforce helped Fitbit develop its personal smartwatch OS that debuted on the $300 Fitbit Ionic final 12 months. Fitbit is probably going hoping that diehard members of the Pebble group, lots of which developed apps and packages for the smartwatch platform, will strive making related packages for Fitbit’s new wearable working system.
The Fitbit SDK is already fairly accessible, permitting builders to enroll and begin constructing packages utilizing all-online instruments. However along with the accessibility of the SDK, Fitbit desires to entice Pebble customers with a reduction: customers with a legitimate Pebble gadget serial quantity can get $50 off a Fitbit Ionic smartwatch. It is presently the one gadget that runs Fitbit OS, and it is helpful to have if you wish to take a look at out any apps made with the SDK.
However for individuals who need nothing to do with Fitbit OS improvement and solely care about how lengthy their Pebbles will final, this information is bittersweet. In response to Fitbit’s announcement, Pebble units will proceed to work after June 30, however these options will cease working: the Pebble app retailer, the Pebble discussion board, voice recognition options, SMS and electronic mail replies, timeline pins from third-party apps (though calendar pins will nonetheless operate), and the CloudPebble improvement software.
There can even be no extra updates to the Android and iOS Pebble apps. Whereas the app stays suitable with present smartphone OS variations (Android eight.1 and iOS 11), Fitbit notes that “it’s potential for future iOS or Android updates to interrupt Pebble compatibility.”
Whereas it is not spelled out explicitly, Fitbit’s timeline spells the tip of what stays of Pebble. With out the Pebble app retailer, the one means customers can handle third-party apps and watch faces is thru different packages like Rebble. CloudPebble let builders write Pebble apps utilizing all-online instruments (much like how Fitbit Studio works now), so after June 30, it is going to be considerably more durable for anybody to jot down new Pebble apps. Whereas Pebble customers could also be comforted to know that their units will proceed to work after Fitbit’s designated date, the destiny of these units in the end lies with their compatibility with up to date smartphone platforms.