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The Pebble smart watch finally arrives on doorsteps to a chorus of approval

After wow­ing donors at Kick­starter last year to such an extent that it went away with over $10 mil­lion in invest­ment, Peb­ble has final­ly start­ed ship­ping its smart wrist­watch, which has been hit­ting doorsteps for a few weeks now. E‑commerce man­agers and e‑commerce ana­lysts want­i­ng to know more about expec­ta­tion man­age­ment could learn a lot from Peb­ble.  After promis­ing ship­ments would begin last fall, a huge order back­log ensured and it took con­sid­er­ably longer to get the ball rolling.  But it’s been extra­or­di­nar­i­ly deft at keep­ing its pre-order cus­tomers reg­u­lar­ly and ful­ly informed via sto­ries, videos and pho­tos.

Mass pro­duc­tion

The first recip­i­ents, of course, have been the startup’s Kick­starter back­ers, but with mass pro­duc­tion now in full momen­tum with 15,000 being man­u­fac­tured every week, every­one else who pre-ordered will soon have theirs if it hasn’t already arrived.  The watch, which con­nects to the iPhone and to Android devices, is mod­est­ly hand­some as opposed to riotous­ly gor­geous, but that crisp, cus­tomiz­able, black-and-white e‑paper dis­play is a real win­ner, remain­ing high­ly read­able even in sun­light.

E‑commerce ana­lysts keen to spot the next big thing might do well to fol­low the Pebble’s for­tunes. It not only dis­plays incom­ing caller IDs, Face­book mes­sages, tweets, emails and weath­er alerts, it will also offer a range of apps for sports and fit­ness enthu­si­asts, from cyclists and run­ners to golfers. Freecad­die is work­ing with the firm to devel­op a golf range-find­er app that will work on over 25,000 golf cours­es across the globe.  It’s total­ly water­proof, too, so swim­mers can keep up with all the lat­est tweets while tak­ing a dip.

The rise of wear­able tech­nol­o­gy

Ender­le Group’s Robert Ender­le says, “Folks liked putting the devices on their wrists when they were bike rid­ing, jog­ging or doing many oth­er sports — or just hav­ing it more handy than in their pock­et.  For a start­up, this is a decent mar­ket that could grow to become the next big thing because often we don’t have a free hand and still need to inter­act with our per­son­al tech­nol­o­gy.”

And that mar­ket is poised to take off – Google Glass alone is set to blaze a trail in wear­able tech­nol­o­gy and rumors abound that Apple, too, is devel­op­ing a smart watch of its own.  This is a space that e‑commerce ana­lysts might want to watch rather close­ly.

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