Fitbit Pay officially launched in the U.K. on Tuesday, but with only one bank currently supporting the mobile payment platform, access to it remains severely restricted for users of the company’s latest wearables.
The Fitbit Pay payment system was introduced as an exclusive feature of the Fitbit Ionic, the activity tracker firm’s first attempt at a smartwatch, released on October 1. The digital wallet works in a similar way to Apple Pay on the Apple Watch, but up until now it wasn’t available outside of the U.S., Canada, and Australia.
Fitbit Pay users in the United Kingdom need to hold an account with Starling Bank, a newcomer and relative minnow on the financial banking scene, which will undoubtedly leave the large majority of Ionic users unable to take advantage of the payment system, at least for now.
Fitbit has confirmed the company is in talks with other U.K. banking services for future support, but with rivals like Apple Pay, which lists over 25 supporting banks on its official website, as well as Android Pay (over 20 banks) and Samsung Pay all jostling for contention, Fitbit will have a job gaining a foothold in the emerging mobile payment industry.
You can check out our in-depth review of the Fitbit Ionic here. Fitbit Pay is expected to hit other European countries sometime in 2018.