7 reasons Apple Watch and Android Wear should be scared of Pebble Time

5. Water resistant

You can swim while wearing the Pebble Time. That's incredibly unique among even the best smartwatches that claim to be waterproof, but don't measure up.

Pebble Time

Prepare for a dive!

The Sony Smartwatch 3, for example, is the most durable among Android Wear watches with an IP68 rating. That means it can be taken 1.5m deep for 30 minutes, but not deeper or longer.

While the official Pebble Time waterproof specs aren't known just yet, the first Pebble and Pebble Steel had a 5ATM rating, which makes it good for 50 meters (165 feet).

Pebble previously told me people have used its smartwatch while diving, though without a working Bluetooth connection for notification while under the seat. Pebble cutely suggests not making calls while underwater.

6. Software

Pebble Time looks a little dated with its plastic design next to Apple Watch and Android Wear, but just look at the software within. It seems ahead of its time.

Pebble Time

The Timeline software looks more impressive than the outer design

There are a lot of fun-looking, colorful animations for making calls, composing messages and receiving new notifications. Everything's laid out logically with a bit of pep.

Compare Pebble's new Timeline software to the more sterile interfaces of Apple Watch and Android Wear. It's the bright and cheery iOS 7 and iOS 8 vs the dark and too-real iOS 6.

7. Color e-paper display

Pebble Time skips out on the super-rich OLED displays popularly used LG and Samsung in favor of an always-on e-paper display, and this time it's in color.

Pebble Time

Even visible in bright sunlight

Yes, it's color palette is limited to 64 colors, but it appears to be easier to see than before and that's really important when delivering a smartwatch that's worn all day long.

Sunlight gets in the way of OLED watches and wearing sunglasses - which you naturally do when it's sunny out - makes it even more complicated.

More from Barcelona next week

It'll be interesting to see how Pebble plans to overcome the limitations set by Apple. iOS voice replies are limited to Gmail notifications, though Pebble says that it's working to enable voice replies for more apps.

Pebble Time

How will Pebble Time score next week in our hands on?

The good news is that voice replies work with major Android apps, including SMS, Hangouts, Gmail, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and hundreds more, according to the company.

TechRadar will be at MWC 2015 next week testing out the new color e-paper screen of the Pebble Time and all of its features in a hands on. Stand by for more from Barcelona, Spain.

Matt Swider