After spending a long time hankering after one, I finally managed to get hold of a Pebble smartwatch about a month back (the Classic, or “OG” version in white, for those who are interested). Admittedly it’s not exactly the latest version of the Pebble, but even so I have to say it was well worth the wait.
I won’t bore you with the historical details of Pebble, as you can read about it in our article on the Pebble Steel or on the Pebble website. Instead I’m going to do as complete a guide to using a Pebble with BlackBerry 10 as possible, from pairing it with your BlackBerry to adding new watchfaces and apps.
You can use either of the native BlackBerry 10 apps (Talk2Watch or Bridge) in conjunction with your Pebble smartwatch. Whichever you choose, you will need to download the Pebble app first, in order to successfully pair your Pebble with your BlackBerry. Talk2Watch (created by Benjamin Sliwa) is available both for free and as a full-featured, premium app; The other option, Bridge (created by CellNinja a.k.a Roger Leblanc), follows a Freemium model – free (full-featured) for three days, then US$3.99 to keep the features. The Android Pebble app is free from Google Play. For the purposes of this How-To, we’ll be using Talk2Watch.
We recommend you also download Hub2Watch (also by CellNinja), which works in conjunction with Talk2Watch to send Hub notifications directly to your Pebble.
Step 1: The Downloads
Before you can pair your Pebble to your BlackBerry, you will need to download and install the following:
- The Pebble app (from Google Play, Snap or via sideload)
You will also need to download and install:
Part one: Pairing with the Pebble
To turn on your Pebble, press and hold any button for two seconds (you can also attach the charger). When you first turn on your Pebble, it will prompt you to download the Pebble app, which you can do using Snap, or from Google Play.
After you’ve installed the Pebble Android app, switch on your BlackBerry’s Bluetooth connection if necessary and open the Pebble app. If you have a Pebble Time, Pebble Time Steel or Pebble Time Round, you’ll need to select your chosen voice language for recording voice notes on your Pebble. If you have an original Pebble or Pebble Steel, you can just tap Continue to proceed. Tap “Get Started” and the app will start searching for your Pebble.
Once the connection is located, the app will announce that it has found a Pebble named Pebble XXXX, where XXXX is the last four digits of your Pebble’s BT Address.
Tap the name of your Pebble, and it will start to connect. Make sure the number on your BlackBerry and your Pebble both match, and accept the pairing. You’ll get a message to tell you the pairing was successful, then another asking if you want allow your Pebble to send information to your BlackBerry. After selecting a language in the Pebble app, you’ll be asked to enable Accessibility Settings. This will allow your BlackBerry and Pebble to share information back and forth. Tap Enable, then close the settings. Your Pebble and BlackBerry are now connected! Close the Pebble app – you won’t need it for the rest of this process.
Part Two: Getting Talk2Watch up and running
Restart your BlackBerry. This will allow Talk2Watch to connect to your Pebble before the Android app does. As soon as your BlackBerry has restarted and you’re back at your home screen, open the Talk2Watch app. You should find that it will automatically detect your Pebble.
If your Pebble isn’t detected, swipe down from the top, tap the Devices icon then Scan. Tap on the icon to connect your Pebble to Talk2Watch, and the following screen will appear:
Congratulations! Your Pebble is now paired with Talk2Watch!
Before you can start getting notifications on your Pebble however, you will need to upload one of the Talk2Watch watchfaces to your Pebble. Open Hub2Watch, and swipe down from the top of the screen. Tap on the Watchfaces icon. You will see there is a choice of four different watchfaces, all of which will work with Talk2Watch. Pick one (or more!), and tap the Install with Talk2Watch button below it.
Open the link with the Pebble app (for some reason I had issues uploading via Talk2Watch); a popup will appear asking if you wish to upload the watchface. Tap “Yes” and the watchface will be installed on your Pebble.
Close the Pebble app, open the Talk2Watch app (which should automatically connect to your Pebble), and you should see your Pebble’s watchface update with any BBMs, Notifications, etc. from your Hub. That’s it – you’re up and running!
In the next article, we’ll look deeper into the Settings for Talk2Watch and Hub2Watch, as well as other apps (for both your Pebble and your BlackBerry) that can increase your Pebble’s functionality!