Last week Google released a surprise update to the Pebble app for Android, allowing folks using the discontinued smartwatches to continue using them with smartphones devices running 64-bit only builds of Android (like the Google Pixel 7 series).

Wondering how many people are still using Pebble watches in 2022? At least 16,000.

That number comes from the folks at the Rebble project, who have been running a third-party server that allows Pebble watches to continue working even after the official Pebble servers were shut down more than four years ago.

Pebble was one of the first companies to launch a modern smartwatch that could synchronize with a smartphone, display notifications, and run third-party apps. But Pebble itself no longer exists after the company was acquired by Fitbit… which was later acquired by Google.

The company’s products had a loyal, and fairly geeky following though. And when Rebble recently rolled out an update that allowed it to collect some anonymous data for analytics purposes, the team discovered that 16,274 individual Pebble devices are still in use.

Most of those are Pebble Time or Pebble Time Steel watches, but there are also some original Pebble devices still in use, as well as a few other models.

At a time when many tech companies expect you to discard (or recycle or trade-in) old gadgets after a few years when the battery starts to go bad, it’s nice to see that thousands of people are finding ways to keep their old gadgets alive.

Rebble, meanwhile, has announced plans for a hackathon from November 18th through the 20th in an effort to encourage developers to create even more apps, tools, or watch faces for those 16 thousand users to install.

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  1. It’s a perfect smartwatch and not only dedicated to exercise and fitness. Only problem I’ve had was adhesive holding the clamshell came loose after my hand got into some oil. I re-attached it with some gasket seal from AutoZone and that worked well and restored the gaskets. Looks factory original. It’s just the right size and functions. My other watch is a Rolex Datejust that sits in a drawer. Still getting 3-4 days per charge. I’ll be using it until it breaks. And now, it’s rare? Even better. Really appreciate the Rebble group for keeping it going after FitBit attempted to brick everyone’s Pebble in an M&A. Swore I’d never spend a dime at Fitbit after that.

  2. I miss my pebble. It was one of the few reasonable sized smartwatches… everything else ends up too large, or way to thick…

  3. I bought my wife 4 of them, 3 are still running daily tasks, she is happy with them and needs no other function. The battery is still holding for 3 days or more, she is content and so am I. Happy wife, happy life they say 🙂

  4. I changed batteries in two Pebble Time Steels so far. Not for the faint of heart, I had to transfer the battery protection board from the old battery too which means soldering directly to the battery leads within the package, but it went well. For closing up the watch I use Sugru glue so it keeps the water-protection too.

  5. I still have the original Pebble (my first Kickstarter project) and a Pebble Time. I’ve moved on to full-fledged smartwatches (Huawei, then Fossil) but I still have great memories of the Pebble experience. I was happy that some of the same functions that I missed from Pebble were returned to Wear, like using the hardware buttons to control music playback. Glad to hear the community’s still going strong.

  6. I wish I still had my pebble time, had a break-in and it was one of the things stolen from my house, otherwise I would be one of those people nursing an old pebble watch.