Pebble is laying off 25% of its workforce, says ‘money is pretty tight’


Pebble enjoyed a brief time in the limelight as Kickstarter’s first true success story, one that saw the startup raise over $10 million for the launch of their first smartwatch: the Pebble. But a lot has changed since then. Today, things are much more competitive, with the wearable market saturated with smartwatches featuring big, colorful touchscreen displays.

Even the followups to the original Pebble, the Pebble Time and Time Steel — which feature tiny color e-paper displays — look somewhat dated when compared against he glitz of the Apple Watch (now with a new low price) and new crop of Android Wear devices. Although Pebble wont disclose sales numbers, it’s this stiff competition that is likely the driving force behind the Pebble Time’s recent price drop.

Pebble, who has apparently raised $26 million in the past eight months in addition to the $20 million they initially raised from the Pebble Time’s Kickstarter campaign, could now be showing signs of a down swing. Tech Insider reports that although a relatively small company, Pebble is reportedly laying off 40 of their 120 employees — around 25% of their workforce. According to Pebble CEO Eric Migicovsky, “money is tight these days,” mentioning that the company has raised a mix of debt and venture capital from private investors (although they wont reveal any names).

Looking ahead, Pebble says they’re looking to focus more on the health aspects of wearables. Although they’re planning their moves cautiously, Pebble is partnering up with Amazon to their products in India next month.

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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