Pebble has thrived upon its open platform philosophy and pushes its software development community to collaborate. To take its most recent watch, Pebble Time, to new heights, the company is now giving its community the opportunity to build hardware — specifically, smartstraps.
Pebble explains via its Kickstarter page that straps can now contain electronics and sensors to interface directly with the apps running on Pebble Time. To encourage “hardware hackers” to experiment with the platform, Pebble has kicked in a cool 1 million dollars in funding in the hopes of the commercialization of smartstrap projects for Pebble devices.
Now, don’t get too excited, because Peeble is quick to tell the masses that “not every single project will get funding from Pebble; we’ll use our best judgment to support the most promising and innovative projects.”
Even still, the support is an enormous win for and vote of confidence in the hardware developer community. Take a look at the two concepts Pebble calls its “early favorites” below.
(1) Xadow Modular smartstrap system
We are big fans of Seeed and their Xadow modules. They offer 20+ strap-sized modules, which include NFC readers, OLED displays, barometers and GPS modules, and we hear a Heart Rate Sensor is coming soon! The upcoming Xadow adapter for Pebble Time will make prototyping new smartstraps very simple and affordable.
(2) Spark Electron for Pebble
Super early hacked-together prototype, not representative of any final design. This prototype from Spark.io demonstrates how their Spark Electron could be used to untether your Pebble and connect directly to the cellular network. Imagine being able to go for a run without your phone and still stay connected!