Pebble’s hardware days are over. Fitbit bought the smartwatch outfit and has gutted it of its software and intellectual property. It has drawn a clear line on refunds and returns. Now where’s the way forward as the health tech company takes over and the smartwatches fossilize?
Well, the company has promised a few things in terms of keeping live cloud-based services afloat — ergo, the core experience of Pebble smartwatches still in use today.
“Our first action to preserve the Pebble experience far into the future will be to update our mobile apps, loosening their dependency on a patchwork of cloud services (authentication, analytics, app locker, etc.),” said Jon Barlow, a Pebble transplant to Fitbit.
The goal for the team is to rain apps down to the devices — either by severing ties with some cloud services or, perhaps, working with open source solutions — and keep them working while not bricking anything in the process (think of it as brain surgery with a conscious patient). As it stands now, the current arrangement of services in use are still in place, but will be whittled through 2017.
Pebble Health APIs, as they are not cloud-based, will still feed to Google Fit and Apple HealthKit. Third-party services like weather, messaging and dictation are at a determination stage. Pebble expects to disclose how long these services can last and to what extent soon.
Nevertheless, we will now have to start watching Pebble OS die.