PineTime Six Months Later

Figured I’d write a quick update about my PineTime since I still refer people to my older posts about it and there are some things that have changed since then.

You can find my previous posts about the PineTime below.

Vibration and notifications

If you didn’t read my first impressions post, one thing I noted was that the vibration motor in my unit wasn’t working. Not long after that post, I contacted Pine64’s support who sent me a replacement watch after a brief back and forth to confirm that the vibration motor on my initial watch definitely wasn’t working. They were super helpful and I’m glad to have a watch with a working vibration motor for notifications.

At first I was worried that getting phone notifications on my wrist would be a distraction, but over time I’ve actually noticed that it helps me get distracted by my phone less often. A quick glance at my wrist is all it takes to see if a notification is worth unlocking my phone for. When it isn’t, it saves me a phone unlock and the potential to get distracted by something I see on it.

Gadgetbridge, the Android app I pair my watch to, is pretty smart about notifications too. It’ll respect the “do not disturb” setting on my phone and not forward notifications to my watch if it’s on, and I can also blacklist or whitelist notifications from specific apps. And of course, the PineTime itself has a “do not disturb” setting as well. Overall, I think wrist notifications are a net positive and I have a lot of control over them.

Updated firmware and battery life

The other big development is the PineTime’s most recent firmware update to InfiniTime 1.13. This update has significantly improved battery life with no noticeable impact on functionality. I used to go about three days on a single charge, but now that’s nearly doubled to five or six. I keep bluetooth and the “raise to wake” option on at all times, so that number should be pretty average or even possibly on the low side for most people. You can certainly stretch out the battery life much longer if you need to. I’ve heard from people claiming they can now get from 10-14 days with different settings.

Final thoughts

I’ve been wearing my PineTime every day since I got it over six months ago. It’s a really neat gadget that’s frankly a steal at the price it’s sold at. The fact that it’s open source and so easy to tinker on is just a cherry on top.

— JP

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