Pebble as a company has grown significantly in the intervening years, becoming profitable in early 2013 and almost doubling its workforce from 45 up to 70 this year. Revenue also is expected to double year over year in 2014.
"When we started working on wearables six years ago, there were few players in the space and a lot of skeptics," says Pebble CEO Eric Migicovsky of Google's news. "It's exciting to see this market grow so quickly -- enabling more interesting use cases and keeping all of us laser-focused on creating the very best user experiences we can."As the company matures, Pebble's ecosystem is experiencing its own expansion. The company recently rolled out an Appstore for its smartwatch and has over 1,000 apps in its library, with 12,000 registered developers ready to add more titles in the future.
As for Pebble's next steps, Migicovsky is not concerned about Google's recent Android Wear announcement and the unveiling of Motorola's Android-based Moto 360 smartwatch.
For now, Migicovsky is more worried about making his products better than Google shaking up the market. He's exploring technologies that could help boost Pebble's week-long battery life further and keeping tabs on newer screen displays, particularly ones made from flexible materials.Besides adding an Appstore, Pebble also recently started selling a new version of the smartwatch. The $249 Pebble Steel features a stainless steel body with a leather or steel band and a face covered with durable and scratch resistant Gorilla Glass material.
Apple also is expected to enter the wearables market in 2014 with its iWatch product. Recent rumors suggest the device will focus on fitness with support for heart rate measurement, step count and more. The device may pair with Apple's Healthbook app, a Passbook-inspired wellness app that could debut alongside iOS 8. The iWatch may also include Siri and mapping functionality.