Still the most func­tional smart­watch to­day, plus who can ar­gue with a 10-day bat­tery life and ac­tual wa­ter-proof­ing?

HWM (Malaysia) - - TELEPORT-UNLOCKED - ZacharyChan

SPEC­I­FI­CA­TIONS

Chas­sis/Bezel Marine-grade stain­less steel // Fea­tures Time­line in­ter­face, Peb­ble app­store, com­pat­i­ble with Mis­fit and Jaw­bone // Com­pat­i­bil­ity iPhone 4S and above (run­ning iOS 8), An­droid de­vices (run­ning 4.3 Jelly Bean and above) // Oth­ers Mag­netic charg­ing cable, built-in mi­cro­phone // Di­men­sions 40.5 x 37.5 x 10.5 mm (case), 22 mm (band) // Weight 62.3g (leather band), 116.3g (me­tal band) // URL www.get­peb­ble.com with it (and just about ev­ery other smart­watch to date) is the abil­ity to ac­tu­ally use it like their ads makes it out to be. Most peo­ple will never con­tin­u­ously fid­dle with all the rich mul­ti­me­dia as­pects of their smart­watches sim­ply be­cause it will never last you through your day.

For gen­eral use, which is to tell time and re­ceive on-de­mand no­ti­fi­ca­tions, that av­er­age two-day bat­tery life is fine. But when you start mess­ing with apps such as us­ing it for GPS map­ping di­rec­tions or god-for­bid, try to play games on your smart­watch, chances are it would have died by mid-day.

The Peb­ble Time Steel has no such is­sue. You'll never have to re­li­giously re­mem­ber to keep it charged at night, and will not be pun­ished even if you for­get to feed it for a few days. That's also one less cable you need to bring with you for that week­end get­away.

For the du­ra­tion of this re­view, be­sides gen­eral dayto-day us­age con­sist­ing of mes­sag­ing, mail and cal­en­dar no­ti­fi­ca­tions, news head­lines and a healthy ob­ses­sion with fit­ness track­ing via Mis­fit, I've also been con­stantly switch­ing watch faces, load­ing (and un­load­ing) apps from the store to try out new fea­tures and time­line sup­port. The Time Steel still lasted me 8.5 days be­fore fi­nally wink­ing out; that's close to Peb­ble's 10-day claim with mod­er­ate-heavy use.

The Peb­ble Time Steel is a no-non­sense smart­watch that de­liv­ers on all the core func­tion­al­i­ties you need in such a de­vice. Al­ways-on time­keep­ing thanks to its e-pa­per dis­play, cus­tom­iz­a­ble no­ti­fi­ca­tions, and apps on the side you can ex­plore with­out wor­ry­ing about bat­tery con­sump­tion. My fa­vorite fea­ture is its 30 me­ter wa­ter­re­sis­tance, which is based on the proper ISO 22810 stan­dard used by watches rather than the merely splash-proof IPXX rat­ings nor­mally used for elec­tronic de­vices.

So, the real ques­tion is whether the Time Steel is worth US$50 more than the Time just for that ex­tra three-day bat­tery? Prob­a­bly not. It all boils down to aes­thet­ics, as the Time Steel is a lit­tle more el­e­gant with the steel link band. But, un­less you're a Kick­starter backer, the steel band is go­ing to set you back an­other US$49.99. With the healthy third-party strap mar­ket for Peb­ble watches, cus­tomiz­ing shouldn't be a prob­lem. At US$199.99, the Peb­ble Time is the one to get.

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