Fitbit has confirmed it will keep supporting Pebble's servers until 30 June, after which point owners of the smartwatch will no longer have access to its cloud services.
The cut-off date was initially set to be the end of 2017, but Fitbit has extended the grace period by an unexpected extra six months. After that point, users won't be able to use Pebble's services, though thanks to an update pushed out last year owners can continue using their smartwatch once the server is switched off.
What they won't have is access to the app store, so future app installs and firmware update will need to be side-loaded.
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Fitbit's in a place where it wants to appease the existing Pebble community while pushing ahead with its own smartwatch ambitions. It's continued to update the Pebble software with bug fixes, but it obviously wants to transition people to the Fitbit Ionic and any future smartwatches it has in the pipeline. It's even offering Pebble users with a valid serial number $50 off an Ionic to tempt them over.
In a blog post on the Pebble extension, the company pointed out how "familiar highlights from the Pebble ecosystem are evolving on the Fitbit OS platform". It also says that more than 10,000 developers have registered since Fitbit launched the SDK last fall.
That may be so, but there remains a passionate community of Pebble users who don't want to make the switch. So passionate, in fact, that some ex-Pebble developers started the Rebble project to retain almost all functionality of the smartwatch platform even once Fitbit turns off the lights.
The main man in charge at Rebble told Wareable that they've made good progress with the project and will be able to supplement the lost app store with a new one when the day comes, though some features like voice recognition won't be supported. But they need more time, and Fitbit's announcement may give them enough so that the baton can be handed over to Rebble come July.
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