A social-media campaign hopes to put pressure on Apple to release the Pebble Time smartwatch app for iOS.
The to-do started after an update on the Time’s Kickstarter page yesterday.
“The Pebble Time iPhone app, as we’ve all noticed, is not yet live on the iTunes AppStore,” the developer wrote. “It remains ‘in review.’ This unexpected circumstance pains us as much it does backers with watches ready to set up.”
The Pebble Time, which raised a record-setting $20.3 million on the crowdfunding site, launched on May 27, but the companion app that will allow it to work with iPhones hasn’t shown up on the App Store yet.
“You can make your voice heard by reaching out to Apple directly, on Twitter, and on Facebook,” Pebble said, ending the update with the “FreeOurPebbleTime” hashtag for use on Twitter. The tag is getting some use, with hundreds of posts both asking Apple to release the app and assuring them that their intentions are not hostile.
Some participants in the campaign are citing a 43-day delay in the Pebble Time app’s approval. This is not the case, however; the month-plus wait has been for an update to the older Pebble iOS app to let it support the new smartwatch. So with that in mind, is the delay on the dedicated app excessive?
Pebble first submitted the app for review on May 2; Apple approved it on May 18. Pebble then pulled its submission and replaced it on May 22 with a version including “minor bug fixes.” That is the version currently sitting on Apple’s end.
Pebble could have simply let the approved version through and then patched those bugs later. At least then, their customers would have something to work with now. We don’t know the nature of the bugs they squashed after the initial acceptance; all we know is that they were, by Pebble’s own description, “minor.”
Sarun Wongpatcharapakorn, an iOS developer who claims to have experience with the App Store submission processposted his thoughts on the situation over at Medium, and he concludes that “Based on [Pebble’s] timeline you have to admit that [it is] the one who [screwed] up the schedule.” Based on his estimates and experience — which assumes a review process of 7 to 14 days — the Pebble Time app could be out as soon as today, not much later than would be normal.
And Twitter would have had nothing to do with it.
We have reached out to Apple for comments regarding the delay in the original Pebble App’s new version and will update this story if we hear back.