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Pebble Steel

11/26/2014 8:16:23 PM
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The Pebble Steel is the premium version of the original Pebble smartwatch, famed for its crowdfunding origins which saw US$10 million (S$12.9 million) being raised.

While the original looks like a plastic gadget, the Steel has the air of a classic watch.

 

Its stainless steel body has a smooth metallic finish with curved sides. A subtle LED light at the bottom near the bezel indicates its charging status. There is a timeless feel to the Steel's handsome design.

The Steel feels comfortable on the wrist with both the leather watchband and the metal watch band. The latter is not included and costs $39.90.

The Steel retains the 144 x 168 pixel monochrome ePaper display of the original. You should be able to read the time display easily, even under bright sunlight. In low lighting conditions, you can activate the backlight with a gentle shake of your wrist.

Pairing the Steel with an iOS and Android smartphone is easy. Just download the free Pebble app, turn on Bluetooth and use the app to connect.

Notifications have been improved with the Steel. With the original Pebble, you have to toggle through different apps to read different notifications. The new Pebble OS shows all of the notifications that are displayed on your phone.

As the display can only show 500 characters, you may have to scroll down - by pressing on the bottom right button - to read longer notifications.

There are interesting apps available for the watch, such as Runkeeper, Yelp and a Flappy Bird clone called Tiny Bird.

The new Pebble OS allows developers to develop watch faces that include the battery level and Bluetooth indicators. I had a lot of fun trying out new watch faces.

With the Steel constantly connected to my iPhone 6 Plus, its battery life hovered between three and four days - shorter than the advertised five to seven days. However, it lasted six days on Airplane mode.

RATING

Features 3/5

Design 4/5

Performance 4/5

Value for money 4/5

Battery life 4/5

Overall 4/5

 
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