First things first, the Pebble looks better in real life than the pics you’ll have seen online. The black model is a little boring but will look neat under suit sleeves – for the record, we prefer the red and black Time. Admittedly, the Time is plasticky, with a stainless steel bezel, but it retains the toy-like charm of the original Pebble while adding friendlier, more unisex curves. It’s very light at just 42.5g including the standard strap, 20% thinner at 9.5mm and the new slightly curved body helps to make it comfortable to wear on the wrist.
It’s amazing how many smartwatch manufacturers are satisfied with making devices that sit flat on top. The Time is the kind of smartwatch you can forget you’re wearing until it vibrates.
The bezels are wide and this does have the effect of making the screen look tiny – at 1.25 inches it’s actually the same size as previous models. Still, the colour e-paper screen livens the Pebble’s alerts up compared to the first one though it cleverly reverts to monochrome for boring settings and menus.
The GameBoy Colour comparisons come easily – how you feel about that is a good indicator of how well you’ll get on with the Pebble Time. It’s quite dim though and even though there is a backlight it can be tricky to read – this is no bright and punchy Android Wear screen, put it that way.
There’s no touch screen, but the four buttons handle most tasks well enough. Buttons on the right handle scrolling up and down through the main menu; the centre button selects options; the left button both acts as a back button and activates the watch’s backlight. The four physical buttons remain and that’s no bad thing – anyone who has worn a smartwatch for any period of time knows a reliable button press can be preferable to a swipe that might go astray. Check out more on the pebble smartwatch here!