May 17th, 2012

The Android powered  “i’m Watch” made quite the splash when it debuted first as a concept late last year, and then as a prototype at this year’s CES. There was so much buzz that many an Android user, and your everyday tech enthusiast, were getting in line, pre-ordering the device as soon as it was made available.

Well, it looks like the Italian smartwatch maker is experiencing delays (again), this time to better equip the little Donut running watches with improved hardware — no doubt to better compete with the likes of rival smartwatches like the Pebble. Starting on July 15th, the i’m Watch will begin shipping out to outstanding orders with the company saying they expect to have all orders fulfilled by Sept. 15th.

Those of you that don’t feel like waiting any further have until the 15th of July to cancel your orders and apply for a refund. For those that plan on waiting this out, you can now expect to receive a 15% discount as part of a thank you gift from the i’m Watch team.

Below is the email being sent out to pre-orderers today. Anyone planning on sticking around for the i’m Watch? Or have the Pebble, Sony SmartWatch, or others caught your wandering eye?

Dear Customer,

we appreciate the patience you’ve shown so far regarding the delivery of i’m Watch. We are aware that you have encountered some inconveniences and that, above all, you were not able to use a device that grows every day further interest around the world.

Unfortunately we have verified once more the validity of that saying: “The best is the enemy of the good!” What do we mean?

We want to tell you today with great transparency and humbleness that, not only have we met all the difficulties of an extremely innovative and ambitious project (and the unforeseen events that have surpassed any logical expectation), but we have especially given into the temptation of implementing some modifications in order to increase and improve the adaptability of i’m Watch towards the future development of technology (for example, enabling it to handle a larger number of apps than initially expected). All of these factors brought us to lose precious time and, particularly, has prevented us from providing you some certain dates for the delivery.

But we are now able to define them as follows, taking into account that we intend to conduct a last serious testing program with our customers:

1) By June 15th we will provide i’m Watch to a group of 300 customers, who will cooperate with us for a final and ultimate check, to be completed by July 15th. We will ask them to give regular feedback on their experience, which will be reported in a public blog on the website in order to allow you to follow its evolution as well.

2) Starting July 15th we will begin to ship the product to all those who have an unsent order. We expect to fulfill the delivery for all current orders within and no later than September 15th.

Given that we understand that you might have lost interest in the purchase, we decided to offer you the following possibilities:

Giving up the purchase and requesting an immediate refund of the paid amount, providing by July 15th an e-mail to the following address, if you are residing in Italy: …, or to the following: … if you are residing abroad. If instead you are willing to wait until the expected date of delivery, you will receive at the delivery a 15% discount on the price paid.

We thank you for your cooperation, very confident that i’m Watch will fully meet your expectations.

Best regards.

Manuel Zanella and Massimiliano Bertolini President and CEO of i’m Spa