I know, I know. It’s got some pretty significant limitations.
If you're a heavy iPhone user, you'll often see its reconnection popup as the app tries to stay active, especially if you've got a RAM-limited iPhone 4S like me. The faces are uninspiring (I use Simplicity). The buttons and band don't shout "quality timepiece". Notifications for apps other than Phone or Messages must be constantly re-enabled in Notification Center. The SDK has taken forever to come out. Sometimes the battery just runs out (ironically) without any notification.
But I still like it, and I still wear it.
Why? Because I don’t have to pull the phone out of my pocket all the time.
OMG, like it’s SO HARD to pull your phone out of your pocket.
It’s not. But there are lots of times when I don’t want to have my phone out in my and everyone else’s faces. Checking the time is one. Non-critical notifications are another. Pebble helps me be more thoughtful about my phone use, both alone and in group settings.
My iPhone is a distraction machine. Even when I’m alone reading a book, every time I pull it out I want to check the weather, or the news, or Twitter, or… you get the point. Regardless of what I start to use my phone for, by the end I’ve whiled away a half-hour in Reeder, Chrome, Tweetbot, or Netbot.
I’m lucky enough that my close friends and family are the only ones who regularly call or send me text messages. Pebble’s inherent limitation on system notifications means that I only get the ones that rise above the noise. If my phone buzzes but my watch doesn’t, I can probably let the notification go. On top of that, with a glance at my watch I can triage the messages I do get.
In a crowd this is even more valuable. I’m a silent phone freak. I never turn on audio notifications, relying on the phone’s vibrate mode. Given how much the phone can move in my pocket, this means I occasionally miss calls, texts, notifications, etc. Not a huge deal, but the watch vibrations are much more noticeable.
On top of that, pulling your phone out in a crowd is often a real party foul. At the very least, as soon as somebody starts it, everybody pulls out their phone and starts tapping away. The watch is much less obtrusive.
So stop being so attached to your phone! Unplug! Let the notifications go! Live here and now!
Totally valid arguments, but I’m married with a wife that works and a two-year-old in school. It’s nice to know I haven’t missed a family emergency. Those who have families will understand that, those that don’t, well I remember those days too. Enjoy being able to disconnect while you can. Pebble may not be for you.
There’s a reason we all started carrying mobile phones in the first place: They’re so darned useful. But however useful it may be, my iPhone is still the biggest challenge to mindfulness in my daily life. The Pebble gives me a little distance with minimal risk, and I appreciate that.