One of Pebble’s first unique features advertised with the Pebble Time was that it would support third-party bands that brought extra functionality to the watch. A new Kickstarter from Fit Pay Inc. has sprung up that plans on offering a mobile payment solution for Pebble watches with a device called Pagaré. It uses NFC to replicate what we’ve seen in Apple’s Apple Watch and what’s eventually going to come to Samsung’s Gear S2.
The Pagaré looks pretty similar to the watch band that ships with the black Pebble Time, but it includes the secure element for payments and an NFC chip, plus its own charger at the end of the strap. Not flashy, but in this case, that’s probably a good thing.
With over 9 million places already accepting mobile payments, Pagaré will work anywhere that Android Pay currently works at. And like other major mobile payment systems, it uses an extremely secure network that doesn’t actually keep your card on file, so you won’t have to worry about numbers or PINs getting stolen. It’s pretty crazy that paying for something with your watch is more secure than using a bank-issued card, but that’s the state of the industry right now.
Interestingly, Pagaré also doesn’t need your phone nearby to use. Once it’s set up, you can leave your phone at home or in the car and still use your Pebble to make a payment. It also doubles as a charger for your Pebble, since the USB cable is built into the end of the strap. You can plug it right into your computer to charge it up, skipping the magnetic charger that ships with Pebble watches. That’s a great combination alongside the Pebble’s extremely fast charging time.
Here’s the bad news: the Kickstarter hasn’t reached its goal yet. It’ll need $120,000 to get off the ground, and you can secure yours early for $49.