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Fitbit will "show Pebblers love" by killing off support for the Pebble this summer

The Pebble is going out in a (Fitbit) Blaze of glory.
The Pebble is going out in a (Fitbit) Blaze of glory.
Fitbit, which acquired the Pebble brand in 2016, has announced that they will support the Pebble smartwatch line until June 20th, 2018. In other words, support for Pebble services and devices will end on June 30th of this year, marking the end of an era.

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December of 2016 marked the end of the Pebble smartwatch; Fitbit acquired the startup and began the processing of gutting the feature sets of Pebble devices for use in Fitbit-branded smartwatches. Pebble users knew they were operating on borrowed time, but now the end is in sight. Fitbit announced yesterday that they will extend support for Pebble devices and services until June 30, 2018. In other words, the Pebble will be dead this summer.

Sadly, this shouldn’t come as a surprise to Pebble users and those that have been following this story. Fitbit released their own fitness-centric smartwatch, the Ionic, late last year. The underpinnings of the operating system, dubbed Fitbit OS, grew out of the fitness company’s acquisition of Pebble a year prior. Fitbit began incorporating many of the Pebble’s software features, many of which made it into the retail version of the Ionic.

Fitbit is pushing the Ionic heavily, stating that “hundreds of former Pebble developers” are “already building with the Fitbit SDK.” Fitbit is also offering Pebble users that still own a Pebble with a valid serial number a $50 discount on the Fitbit Ionic this spring. The discount is available to any Pebble owner that purchased a Pebble prior to December 7, 2016, the date that Fitbit finalized its purchase of Pebble). Users will also have to register for Fitbit’s marketing emails to receive details on how to redeem the discount.

In the meantime, Pebble devices around the world will still enjoy their full feature set until June 30, 2018. On July 1, Pebble hardware will still work, but some features will be turned off. The features getting the axe include:

  • Pebble appstore
  • Voice recognition
  • SMS and email replies
  • Timeline pins from third-party apps (i.e., not the Pebble calendar)
  • CloudPebble dev tool

The Pebble app will continue to work on the current versions of iOS and Android (iOS 11 and Android 8.1 Oreo, respectively). However, future operating system updates could disable or break the app and its connection with a Pebble device.

If you’re a Pebble user, it’s time to start looking to other smartwatches available. Of course, you could always go “off the grid” and use a third-party app store and services, such as those at Rebble.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2018 01 > Fitbit will "show Pebblers love" by killing off support for the Pebble this summer
Sam Medley, 2018-01-25 (Update: 2018-01-25)
Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Review Editor - @samuel_medley
I've been a "tech-head" my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a Systems Analyst for my local school district. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news articles and notebook reviews. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not hunched over an electronic device or writing code for a new database, I'm either outside with my family, playing a decade-old video game, or sitting behind a drum set.