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Wearables

How to make your own Pebble Time watch face

By Adam Doud June 23, 2015, 10:00 am

One of the really cool things that I enjoy most about my Moto360 is the customizable watch faces I can create using a normal JPG upload and few customization options. I love this because I can really make the watch mine. It’s not worth the developmental hassle to make a custom watch face and code it for the Play Store and everything because at the end of the day, how many people are going to want a TekBeard watch face? Plenty more people would be interested in a Pocketnow watch face, but still, that’s a lot of coding for a very specific audience.

When I got my Pebble Time, one of the first things I started doing was browsing through watch faces. There’s a great selection in there, and some of them are pretty neat. But I still felt myself wishing that I could make a watch face that was “me.” Then my brother sent me a link and I’d found one that was me:

pebble_time01

But then I started to dig a little deeper and found this website where you can create your own watch face! Whoa. So I went with the first image that came to mind:

Time_pn_face_2

Some folks have seen this on Twitter and Instagram and asked about it, so here’s the link to mine. But, I wanted to share how to go about making your own. You know, give a man a fish, teach a man to fish, and all that.

The driving force behind this is a web app called, creatively enough, “Watchface Generator for Pebble”, created by Paul Rode.  This site allows you to upload an image, and change a number of different settings to customize your watch face. It then returns you a link and a barcode you can visit on your phone to download the new face. This site is an offshoot of the developer’s original site designed to create watch faces for the original Pebble and Pebble Time.

The new site is in an early stage of development, for instance only including digital time, but the developer assured me that more was on the way, with the near-future goal of matching the features on the original Pebble watch face site. Good news to be sure. Between the two web sites – the watch face generator for the original Pebble/Pebble Steel and the generator for Pebble Time, the site has created over 350,000 watch faces to date. Your watch face will be preserved indefinitely (be sure to remember your link!)

The site itself is relatively straight forward, but just for fun, let’s walk through making a brand new watch face.

Start off by choosing an image. Obviously, in this case I went with the Pocketnow logo (click the image for the original size):

pocketnow

 

On the first screen, you’ll also be asked to choose your background color. In this case, I went with white to match the color of the image. You’re also asked to upload the image you want to use. Notice the preview on the left hand side. It shows you a preview for both the Pebble Time (color) and the Pebble (black and white):

watch_face_step_1

 

The rest of the page includes a number of different options, all straightforward. The most important one for our example is the horizontal and vertical offset:

watch_face_step_2

This area allows you to center the image if necessary. You can also set the image to be slightly off-center. Generally, I recommend dropping the logo down a bit, but I left it centered this time around.

Next, you switch to the digital numbers on the watch face. You can see my settings here:

watch_face_step_3

and here:

watch_face_step_4

In this case, you can see I went with an upper right positioning for the digits – ChicagoLight font…of course!

Finally, once everything is all set, go ahead and click “Generate”

watch_face_step_5

Scan the barcode with your phone, and you’ll be asked to download the watch face:

watch_face_step_6

Tap on download on your phone, and you’ll be asked to choose (or you might automatically be sent to) the Pebble Time app. You will then be asked to allow loading an “External app”. Tap “OK” and your watch face will be loaded into the Pebble Time app and you’ll find your watch face on your watch, ready to roll.

I encourage you to check out the developer’s Facebook page for some awesome watch faces. The Pocketnow logo is a softball honestly. True creativity awaits you on this site. Give it a look, and in the meantime, remember:

This is your life and it’s ending one minute at a time.

watch_face_fight_club

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