Pebble Starts Shipping Smartwatches, but Not Without a Few Caveats

After multiple delays, the record-shattering Pebble smartwatch starts shipping today.

The Kickstarter project garnered more than $10 million from nearly 69,000 backers early last year but the overwhelming demand made supply a lot more difficult than the folks behind Pebble anticipated (they were originally shooting for just $100,000).

There’s still three issues to address, although all should prove relatively minor

The first is that shipping is going to be really slow. The company says that less than 500 units will be shipped today. Than’s less than 1% of the total preorders.

The second issue is that the Pebble iOS mobile app isn’t even in Apple’s App Store. It hasn’t been approved yet. But Pebble says they’ve been actively responding to reviewer feedback and there should be no problem getting it live on the App Store. Since shipping will be slow, most users probably won’t even notice this current concern because it will be fixed long before their Pebble arrives on their doorstep.

The third is that the company can only build batches of smartwatches one colour at a time, starting with black—not what they originally promised, they admit, but the best they can do. So those who selected unpopular colours could be waiting a long time before their device is even built, let alone shipped.

The good news, however, is that mass production of Pebble smartwatches is finally underway. Up to 1,000 of the devices are being manufactured per day, according to the company, whose founder is Canadian. And this number could reach 2,400 per day, which is the factory’s full capacity.

At 1,000 per day, it would still take more than two months to build all the Pebbles ordered from the campaign, plus several weeks on top of that to ship them all (it takes seven days after manufacturing to reach a fulfillment centre for shipping, plus another few days to actually be delivered). So let’s hope they reach full capacity soon to accelerate the process.