When Fitbit announced it was buying parts of Pebble and kill the brand, Fear and Sadness took over our emotional control panels.
It's the end of the road for Pebble, but developers and users are slowly finding their way over to sample what Fitbit has cooked with Pebble's ingredients in the Fitbit Ionic. But that won't please everyone mourning Pebble's demise. Is there a chance Joy could take over as we find a true alternative to the affordable, simple to use, long-lasting, geek chic smartwatch series?
Simply put, there's nothing that we've seen so far that matches Pebble on every single one of its main plus points. In some ways the list really shows up what Pebble managed to get down. But before you turn away from the whole smartwatch idea in Disgust or Anger (sorry not sorry), consider the below Pebble alternatives and please do add your own in the comments.
The heir apparent
We have to start here. Pebble's DNA lives on in Fitbit's new flagship smartwatch. Old Pebble developers have been migrating over to the Ionic, as have users. Fitbit is trying its hardest to make sure these people have every reason to jump over, but not everyone wants to go to the afterparty.
Regardless, you'll get a solid smartwatch with GPS, Fitbit Pay, and - of course - a whole lot of ported Pebble apps. Will that be enough to quell your broken heart? We're not quite sure, but it's worth a shot. You don't have long to make a decision, as Fitbit is keeping Pebble's lights on until 30 June, 2018.
Wareable verdict: Fitbit Ionic review
Best affordable all-rounder
Mobvoi's Ticwatch E is a good example of how affordable doesn't mean you need a bunch of compromises. This is one that ticks (again, not sorry) most of the boxes. Want GPS? You got it. Attractive, simple design? Boom. Good customizations over Android Wear 2.0? They're there.
There are no NFC payments, but it does have a pleasant fitness suite and the Google Play Store should you want to download any apps. Using the Ticwatch E is just fun, and your wallet will thank you.
Wareable verdict: Ticwatch E review
Best for indie appeal
Here's another crowdfunding success story. Garnering $6 million on Indiegogo, the MyKronoz ZeTime has that special something that drew people to Pebble in the first place. MyKronoz isn't afraid of thinking outside the box.
In this case, it means combining watch hands with a full display, giving you a unique take on the smartwatch. The mechanical hands are always present, and they point to the digital watch faces to signify the time. When you get a notification, the hands move to the 3 and 9 o'clock positions, getting out of the way of the text, which wraps around the hands. Simpatico.
Wareable verdict: MyKronoz ZeTime first impressions
Best for battery life
Fitbit doesn't like calling the Blaze a smartwatch, but it's pretty dang close. It's also got five days of battery life, so if you're really concerned you'll have to take it off a lot to charge it - don't be.
You won't have an app store or NFC payments, but you will have a pretty good fitness experience with decent notification support. And did we mention that great battery life?
Wareable verdict: Fitbit Blaze review
Still looking? Consider these
Best for keeping things simple
Skagen Connected 2017
This one is a bit of a compromise. It's not as smart as a full-on smartwatch, but it's also not as dumb as an analog watch. It's got one foot in either world, with all the stylishness of an analog watch and some of the smarts of a smartwatch.
In this case, you've got buttons you can click to activate various functions, which you can set in the companion app. The hands will also spin around and point to whatever color for corresponding notifications.
Wareable verdict: Skagen Connected 2017 review
Best for fitness
One for runners, the Amazfit Pace - from the tech company behind Xiaomi trackers - has built-in GPS, 2.4GB of storage for music and lasts up to 11 days on a single charge. With GPS and continuous heart rate tracking, that's more like 36 hours but the option is there to go for the week plus battery life.
A few more pros, it's IP67 water and dust resistant, it hooks up to Strava Run and it handles call, text, app and email alerts (though we're not sure exactly how they appear yet). Compatible with both iPhone and Android, this is another smartwatch we haven't tested yet but look out for a review on Wareable soon.
Let us know what you're considering as a Pebble alternative, and what we've missed, in the comments below.