The Pebble Smartwatch has departed the public venture capital site Kickstarter and arrived at mainstream sales portal Best Buy. Having crushed sales records on the popular niche crowdfunding site, Pebble is now setting its sights on the average consumer and hoping to continue its dominance of the emerging smartwatch market.
The wearable computing revolution is just starting to heat up and the Pebble smartwatch is poised to take an early lead. By transitioning from the role of a popular technophile and early adopter wait-listed device to a mainstream revenue generating machine distributed by electronics giant Best Buy, Pebble has provided itself an opportunity to continue its dominance by again being the first to market. On July 7, the Pebble smartwatch will be available both online and in store for $149 through Best Buy. This is a large step for the fledgling company that, until recently, only distributed the connected watch via its Kickstarter campaign page. Such a move does not necessarily guarantee a successful product. However, it does serve to enhance visibility and shore up the shoddy manufacturer to end user distribution issue that has plagued the startup thus far.
The Pebble smartwatch arrival at Best Buy arrival comes one week after Sony announced that its updated Sony smartwatch 2 would be shipping in September. This gives Pebble the summer to make a marketing push and cement a firm foothold in this emerging market. Surely, Sony’s new device will also find shelf space at Best Buy, giving Pebble its first bit of competition and consumers their first chance to compare smartwatches side-by-side. Having alternate options from which to chose will likely cause cannibalization of Pebble’s current market dominance. However, early adopters will benefit as Pebble will be forced to update their product and get on the ball with regard to their lack of features and available apps. Apple, Google, and Samsung have also declared their intention to enter the wearable computing market and all three will likely develop products that will far outshine the current Pebble smartwatch. Accordingly, for Pebble, it is a good thing that they are rolling out their product now.
We are encouraged to see a current generation smartwatch finally available through a mainstream outlet such as Best Buy. The more that the public is exposed to wearable computing tech, the more that they will want it. Such consumer demand will in turn motivate more visionary developers to bring additional advanced products to market, thus further fueling the evolutionary cycle. Although only the first step to mainstream acceptance of smartwatch technology, Pebble’s arrival signals the upcoming wave of wrist-borne devices that will landing upon our shores in short order. For more on this surge, check our list of favorite smartwatches.
Pebble Smartwatch: [Company Website]
Jon is the Editor-In-Chief at Wear Guide and writes about wearable technology On Your Arm. Jon has a M.S. in Computer Science, won several intercollegiate events as a member of the UCLA Cycling Team, and is currently active on the USA Triathlon circuit which provides him the opportunity to field-test wearables under grueling conditions. Jon also writes for our sister publication Electric.guide.
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