Waterloo alumnus hits jackpot with Pebble smartwatch

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Eric Migicovsky is one of those “overnight success” stories that was years in the making.

In just six days, the University of Waterloo systems design engineering grad has raised more than $3.2 million in online orders for his new “smartwatch” that connects wirelessly with the iPhone and Android phones.

He appears set to smash all previous records for Kickstarter, a New York-based online funding platform for products in such fields as technology, music, food and publishing.

“We’re pretty pumped,” Migicovsky said in a phone interview Monday from Palo Alto, Calif.,

where he’s now based. His new wristwatch, called Pebble, alerts owners to calls, emails or messages on their iPhone or Android phones. It’s ideally suited for cyclists, runners, golfers and people on the go who don’t have immediate access to their smartphones. There’s even a music control app for couch potatoes who don’t want to get up to change a tune on their smartphone. For cyclists, the Pebble can act as an on-bike computer by connecting to the GPS on a smartphone to display speed, distance and pace data. For golfers, the Pebble can indicate distance to a hole. The Pebble smartwatch is a “natural evolution” of the inPulse smartwatch that Migicovsky started working on while a student at UW in 2008. [Full story]