In wearables, one size doesn't fit all. Some Apple Watch owners may never use Apple Pay; others may consider it a must-have feature.
The founders of Blocks Wearables, Serge Didenko and Ali Tahmaseb, have their own approach to this issue: Make the watch modular, with consumers able to add and remove hardware on their own.
Blocks, which seeks funding through a Kickstarter campaign, will have an NFC module for payments, as well as modules that add a SIM card, heart rate monitor, air quality monitor, GPS, biometrics and camera, among other features. The modules plug into the watch's wristband.
Blocks is preparing to announce a major NFC provider as partner to develop software for payment authentication to "allow our users to make payments in most countries worldwide," Didenko said.
The NFC module would be an active chip to communicate with external sources, but it does not interact with the face of the smartwatch, which Blocks refers to as the Core. "The NFC solution would be a secure closed system developed with our partner," Didenko added.
Blocks plans to start shipping the smartwatches to consumers in May of 2016, working with its manufacturer, Compal Electronics, Didenko said.
As of Oct. 30, the Blocks Kickstarter campaign had raised $1.1 million from more than 3,700 backers.
Another Kickstarter-funded wearable payment project, the Kerv ring, recently completed its own successful funding campaign.