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by inKin
05 Sep

Will This Smartwatch “Steel” Your Heart? A Review On Pebble Steel

There are so many smartwatches available to you today that it could make your head explode. It’s hard to decide—do you get one with great looks or great technology?

Well, that all depends on what you’re looking for. But while you’re perusing, you really should consider the Pebble Steel smartwatch. It’s simple yet has many features that make it one of the top smartwatches to date. It's very similar to the Pebble, its predecessor. But if you’ve never seen the Pebble smartwatch, then you probably don’t know what we’re talking about. So without further ado, here’s a review on Pebble Steel. 

Design and Screen Display

Pebble Design and Screen Display | inKin Blog

Photo Credit: Get Pebble Blog

Unlike its predecessor, the Pebble Steel has a more glamorous and high-end look with its genuine leather strap and square, stainless steel design; it’s also available with a metal strap for a total of four styles. But if you’re going to shell out $149.99 for a smartwatch, then it should look somewhat classy!

While the Steel doesn’t have the colorful screens that other smartwatches have, it does have a LED backlight which you activate with a flick of your wrist; you can read the screen easily in direct sunlight which is great if you’re jogging or just out walking your dog. Not many would think so, but the monochrome screen is a good feature; with a black and white display, the battery lasts longer (more about the battery later). To navigate the screen, there are four buttons: one button puts the screen to sleep and wakes it up while the others move down, up and choose options. Yes, sadly, it isn’t a touchscreen—although some might see that as a good thing.

Performance, Features & Software

Performance, Features & Software | inKin Blog

Photo Credit: Trustedrewiews 

Pebble Steel will be able to keep time by itself; however, if you want to unearth its functions, you must connect it to your iOS or Android to install the Pebble app. When you connect for the first time, your watch will be scanned by the app to see what version of software it has. You might have to wait for the installation of the current software to finish before using any of the functions.

Unfortunately, nothing can be loaded on the watch unless you use your phone. But the watch holds eight watch faces and applications that you can get from the Pebble App store. Apps range from simple versions of things like eBay to toggle apps for certain phone functions. When you’ve made your choice, it’ll take just several seconds to download it to your Pebble Steel.

One fantastic app that’ll work with Google Navigation turns the watch into a compass. What a useful app if you’re in a new city and are unsure of how to get around!

Of course, Pebble apps are being improved upon all the time, and one awesome new app that gets loaded on your phone and works with the Pebble Steel is Pebble Locker. This app acts as a wireless security gadget for your phone. When your phone “sees” that your Pebble Steel is linked, the screen lock is disabled so you won’t have to type your password in each time you pick up your phone. Pretty neat, huh? If your smartphone is stolen, not nearby or lost, the link between your phone and watch via Bluetooth will be disconnected. Your screen lock is then reestablished thereby protecting all of your valuable personal information.

Speaking of Bluetooth, its connection with your phone and watch are powerful, and there are hardly any disconnections if any at all. It’s also amazing that you can actually leave your phone in a different room and still receive notifications to your Steel. If there’s too much distance and your watch and phone become disconnected, Bluetooth will reconnect automatically when both are in the range of each other again.

Pebble likes to keep things simple which can be a real strength for people who don’t need features like voice commands. The Pebble Steel has been enhanced with quick launch options and an activity tracker. The latter includes fitness apps from Misfit and Jawbone and is a huge improvement that puts the watch right up there with all other rival fitness trackers. Also, just like its older sibling, the Pebble Steel is water-resistant to 50 meters.

The Pebble Steel can handle any notifications without the use of software—which is terrific! So text messages, email alerts, phone calls and calendar appointments will show up on the watch’s screen, and it vibrates to let you know when there’s an alert. You can even reject phone calls from the Steel! How awesome is that? There’s a wonderful advantage to all of this too—your phone won’t need to be charged as often because you’ll be using its screen less.

There’s one very effective feature that is new with the Pebble Steel—the ability to use the Steel’s buttons to control your smartphone’s music player. This saves you the hassle of dragging your phone from your pocket each time you’d like to skip a song.

Battery Life

Battery Life | inKin Blog

Photo Credit: Trustedrewiews 

So far, one of the biggest negatives about smartwatches is how often the battery needs to be charged. There are some smartwatches that need to be charged every day. That can be a pain in the butt when you’re also charging your eReader, phone, tablet or any other gadget you may have and there isn’t another plug for your watch. So you’ll be happy to read that this is another area that the Pebble Steel can keep up with its rivals and even surpass some. Since the Steel’s functions are simple, and the screen is just monochrome, the battery will last for 5-7 days of use before needing a charge.

The Steel comes with a connector cable that plugs into a USB port at one end and magnetically attaches to the watch at the other. The cable fits almost any wall charger. But don’t lose the cable because if you do, you won’t be able to recharge your Pebble Steel and will need to buy another cable.

Just One More Thing…

Pebble Steel vs. Pebble Time Steel | inKin Blog

Photo Credit: Moving Electrons

There is one question you could ask yourself: Should I buy the Pebble Steel or the Pebble Time Steel, which is the newer watch and $50 more? The Pebble Time Steel is stylish with polished detail and is in color! The Time Steel has a LED backlight, is compatible with iOS and Android, is water-resistant and has a battery life of—are you ready?—10 days! There’s a Timeline to check out different life moments, and it tracks not only your activity but sleep too, and you get customized insights.

So it's entirely up to you to decide whether you really need or want all of that.

Even though the Pebble Steel might not be as useful or have as many features as its other smartwatch competitors, it’s still one of the best choices available. If you’re looking for a smartwatch that won’t make your life complicated but looks like it cost big bucks, then the Pebble Steel is for you.


Photo Credit: Cnet

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