Singapore

Commuters can now pay fares with new EZ-Link wearables


With a tap of the wrist, you can soon pay for bus and train rides if you have ez-link compatible fitness trackers. China-based Watchdata Technologies and US-based Garmin have incorporated a smart chip in their trackers to allow them to work like an ez-link card.

This was done in partnership with EZ-Link, which issues the cards here, and could signal a new era for wearable technology and a cashless society.

The ez-link wallet is also accepted at 30,000 retail points here, including Giant and Cold Storage supermarkets, as well as Guardian and 7-Eleven.

For starters, only two devices - the Watchdata Batman v Superman Fitness Tracker X EZ-Link, and the Garmin vivosmart HR with EZ-Link - can be used to pay for public transport rides.

The Watchdata band will be available for $42.80 on EZ-Link's online store from next Tuesday, while the Garmin band will go for $259 at major retailers in Singapore from end-March.

"This milestone marks the beginning of a new era for smart wearable technology," said Mr Huang Wenwei, Watchdata's general manager of payment & ID.

He said it will add the ez-link function in more products later.

Mr Cris Duy Tran, a consulting analyst of digital transformation at market research firm Frost & Sullivan Asia-Pacific, said: "The ez-link function is a bonus for existing fitness fans."

Such contactless payments use the wireless Near Field Communication technology to transmit data between the wearable device and a contactless payment reader.

Singaporemrttaiwan