Pebble Adds Voice Activation
After getting its start via a Kickstarter campaign, Pebble has emerged as an unexpected innovator in the smartwatch market. Now owners will be able to add advanced voice features to their devices as Pebble is allowing developers to create new apps for the Time, Time Steel and Time Round smartwatches.
Pebble is teaming up with Nuance Communications to release a new Dictation API and encouraging the development community to get creative about incorporating dictation capabilities into their apps. While the Pebble Time already includes limited voice support, advanced voice commands would give the devices more versatility.
Kean Wong, Pebble’s VP of software engineering, gave this statement: “The value of a smartwatch is directly connected to its overall aesthetics, fit, and intuitive functionality. Making voice capabilities accessible to developers will help grow the Pebble app ecosystem exponentially, providing Pebble users access to more apps that are fun, intuitive, and easy to use.”
“Voice opens up a world of possibility for wearable devices—in seconds, messages dictated by voice are sent right from the wrist with just a touch of a button,” added Scott Taylor, Nuance Mobile Senior Vice President of Devices. “By opening the Dictation API to Pebble developers, more experiences will be delivered and consumers will be able to connect without having to look at their device.”
Support is available now for the Time and Time Steel models with support for the Time Round coming November 8. This is definitely a smart move by Pebble, offering advanced smartwatch features without a luxury smartwatch price. With the Pebble Time starting at $199.99 and the Time Steel for $249.99, these moderately priced devices could lure potential buyers away from rival smartwatches, especially since they also have the advantage of running either Android or iOS.