When it comes to smartphone-tethered smartwatches, Pebble has an advantage: its app store hosts a plethora of apps that work well with the watch. Its music remote lets you pause, play and skip tracks, works with iOS and Google Play Music, as well as Spotify; there are navigation apps for walking, running and public transport; Internet of Things apps like Leaf; and more.
One area where it doesn't have a clear corner on the market, however, is general fitness tracking. While a few unofficial, phone-tethered pedometer apps have shown up in the Pebble app store, Misfit's new app is the first endorsed by the device's maker, and it turns a Pebble and Pebble Steel into a smartphone-free step counter and sleep tracker.
The app, which can be downloaded from the Pebble app store right now, also displays time and activity "points" for the day at a glance. Misfit, best known for its Shine hardware activity monitor that connects to an iPhone, is announcing a long-term partnership with Pebble with the launch of its new app.
It's too soon to say whether the app will turn a Pebble into a full-fledged pedometer that can rival wearables like the Apple Watch and Android Wear devices, but it's a welcome addition. Pebble's stripped-down, simple design is what set it apart from its competition, and this update demonstrates that it can still stand up to wearable tech juggernauts like Samsung and Google — even when they're all pushing the same features.