Jawbone Announces UP4 Fitness Band with Contactless Payments

The UP4 is joined by two other just-launched activity trackers, the UP2 and UP3.


Jawbone has announced three new wristbands: the UP2, a follow-up to the sleep- and activity-tracking UP24, the much-anticipated UP3 that offers more advanced tracking capabilities and—most interestingly—the all-new UP4, a band that includes an NFC chip for making mobile payments with American Express cards. 

Available this summer, the $199 UP4 is pretty much identical to the $179 UP3, with a multi-sensor platform for in-depth activity, sleep and heart health tracking, apart from the inclusion of NFC payments.

Note that American Express is the sole payment partner at this time, so you won’t be able to use just any credit card. American Express cardholders will be able to connect an eligible card via the UP app on Android and iOS, and those who don’t own an Amex but are interested can even apply for one directly in the app.

The Jawbone UP4 is the first standalone activity tracker to incorporate contactless payments. The Apple Watch will let users go wallet-less thanks to its Apple Pay feature—and several smartwatch makers are rumored to be incorporating contactless payments—but the UP4 is the first fitness tracker to integrate this functionality. And while a fitness band doesn’t necessarily replace the smartphone-like interface of a smartwatch, it’s easy to see how the UP4’s payments feature could come in handy. Imagine, for example, needing to stop mid-run to hydrate; you could buy a bottle of water directly from your wristband.

On the other hand, mobile payments are still relatively new, and some customers may not feel strongly enough about the feature to shell out an extra 20 dollars.

As for the other newly announced products, the UP2 is a smaller, lighter incarnation of previous Jawbone bands such as the original UP and the UP24.

At $100, it’s one step up from the UP Move Tracker, and it includes more features, such as vibrating notifications and a smart alarm that wakes you at the optimal time in your sleep cycle. It sports a laser-etched design available in black and light gray.

Meanwhile, the UP3 will begin shipping on April 20th. Due to delays in production, many have been waiting for the UP3 since late last year. Like the Jawbone UP2, the UP3 is available in two colors: black and silver. Each color option comes with its own pattern; the silver version features a series of four X's, while the black model sports diagonal lines. The design looks to be identical to the UP4, as the only difference between the two devices is the inclusion of contactless payment technology.

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