When Pebble announced its Pebble Time Steel last year, it also debuted smartstraps, which are watch bands with built-in sensors or other goodies that let you add functionality to your Pebble. We haven’t heard much about smartstraps since, but a new Kickstarter is changing that.
The Pagaré NFC Smartstrap aims to add contactless payments to the Pebble thanks to its built-in NFC functionality and and accompanying app. With the Pagaré app on your Pebble, you can scan your cards into the app and then press the up and down buttons on your Pebble watch to cycle to the card that you want to pay with. You can also use the app to enable or disable cards, delete cards, set a card to be your default payment, and view your purchase history.
When you’re ready to make a payment, you can use a contactless NFC terminal, much like the ones used for Apple Pay and Android Pay. Pagaré touts that you can also make payments without your phone.
FitPay, the company behind the Pagaré, says that it plans to add more functionality to its smartstrap. Some of the features that it intends to add are transit integration as well as support for tickets.
Pagaré works with the Pebble Time, Pebble Time Steel, and Pebble Round. If you want one, you can back the Pagaré Kickstarter. There’s an early bird option that’ll get you a Pagaré smartstrap for $49, a full $40 off the suggested price, but there are only 153 left at that tier as of this writing. Other options include a $69 tier that includes one Pagaré smartstrap, a limited $199 tier that offers a Pebble Time and a Pagaré, and two $249 tiers that offer either a Pebble Time Steel or a Pebble Time Round along with a Pagaré.
The Pagaré Kickstarter is set to run through March 9 with a goal of $120,000. If it’s funded, the Pagaré smartstraps are expected to begin shipping in July 2016.
One of the perks of the Apple Watch is that it works with Apple Pay, even if you don’t have your iPhone on you. The Pagaré aims to bring similar functionality to the Pebble Time, and so this smartstrap could be a big deal for Pebble users. We’ll just have to wait until it ships in July to see how well it works in the real world.