The Palo-Alto based smartwatch maker has upgraded its look to sleek metal with the launch of Steel at CES 2014, a new version of the smartwatch that includes stainless steel and Corning’s Gorilla glass. Costing $249 and shipping from Jan. 28, the Pebble Steel essentially does the same as the original Pebble smartwatch: sync with your smartphone to bring email, text and calendar notifications to your wrist.
Pebble calls Steel, which bears the look of a traditional Rolex watch and comes with an addition leather strap, a “premium smartwatch,” a label certainly reflected in the price: the original Pebble, which features a TPU rubber watch strap, costs $150.
“With Pebble, we created an iconic, colorful, and sporty smartwatch, but we wanted to build something even more refined,” the company said in a blog post on Monday. The company says the Steel is waterproof and has a battery that lasts for five-to-seven days.
The company started by engineer Eric Migicovsky has sold more than 300,000 Pebble smart watches since it launched as the most successful Kickstarter campaign ever in 2012, raising more than $10 million. (Migicovsky, 27, also features on our latest 30 Under 30 list in tech.)
Pebble also announced on Monday that it was preparing to launch Pebble’s first “appstore” which it says will be the “very first open platform for sharing apps optimized for wearables.” Pebble users will be able to access the store through the Pebble app on their iOS or Android device, allowing them to download the apps onto a smartphone. Launching more useful services through Pebble will be an important step for the company in keeping ahead of the looming giants who are getting into the smartwatch game, notably Samsung and Apple.