updated 01:46 pm EST, Wed January 9, 2013
Factory creating 15,000 Pebble watches per week
The Pebble smart watch will be shipping to backers on January 23rd. Company CEO Eric Migicovsky made the announcement at CES, adding that the e-paper timepiece will be shipping in batches, and is good news to Kickstarter backers that have waited for the wrist-based gadget, including through a number of production delays.
Migicovsky confirmed that the Pebble only recently went into full production to The Verge, and that the factory in China is manufacturing 15,000 watches per week. If there are no further delays, it will take the company five and a half weeks to produce enough watches for its 85,000 Kickstarter-based pre-orders. He also claimed that there were "tens of thousands" of retail pre-orders for the smartwatch, and that "our goal is to just keep pumping out Pebbles."
Pebble reached a total fund of over $10 million on Kickstarter last May, far beyond the original goal of $100,000 set by Migicovsky. Original estimates for the Pebble would have placed the watches in the hands of customers by September, but the high number of orders forced the company to move manufacturing in China.
The Pebble has a 144x168 e-paper display, and connects to Android and iOS devices over Bluetooth 4.0, allowing apps such as personal training software RunKeeper to push notifications to the watch face.