One of these wallets is smarter -- and cuter -- than the others. Out of a whopping 508 wallet projects on Kickstarter, somehow it seems only two so far have location tech actually built into them that shows you where they are when they’re lost.
StreetSmart’s SmartWallet is the most recent entry into this surprisingly underrepresented category. Other wallet makers crowding Kickstarter are too busy trying out-slim each other’s designs to get smart to the Internet of Things.
Like Ping Wallet, its successfully funded plain aluminum predecessor, SmartWallet is a Bluetooth-integrated anti-loss money and card stasher -- only it’s bigger, holds more cash and cards, and it’s multi-pocketed and constructed of hand cut leather. These nuances might not add up to much if you don’t care about how fashionable your wallet is, but if you do, SmartWallet wins points for style.
As for the high-tech goodies that help you find SmartWallet when you space it and misplace it, Bluetooth and GPS locators are neatly tucked into a sturdy money clip attached to the outside of the thin, lightweight wallet. For charging your phone up on the go, the billfold features a built-in 1000 mAh (milliamp hours) waterproof polymer encased rechargeable battery, also hidden in the money clip.
Should you experience a not-so-smart moment and lose your SmartWallet (it happens), just launch the companion app on your iPhone and find it by distance and direction -- not unlike Hot and Cold, that silly game you played as a kid -- within a 50- to 150-foot radius. Thanks to an embedded GPS receiver, it’ll find your phone over even further distances. So, in theory, if you leave your wallet on a barstool at a pub downtown, or if a pickpocket rips you off and bails on the subway, you might not be entirely screwed.
Or, if you lose the smartphone (within the above noted radius) that you Bluetooth-paired your SmartWallet with, just press both sides of the wallet clip to make it ring (or vibrate). And, voila, you should find it.
Don’t fret, Droid heads. An Android app for the wallet will come later, if SmartWallet reaches its $35,000 Kickstarter goal in the next 12 days.
Kick in a $75 pledge and you’ll get a Standard SmartWallet. A pledge of $99 scores you the Premium edition. Both come in Jasper, Onyx or Amber colors. A $199 pledge buys you a striped “Moonstone” model. If the $1 pledge gets 500 backers, SmartWallet co-creator Samuel Pofcher will do something crazy -- get StreetSmart tattooed across his belly. Not in wimpy henna. In real ink. Oh, and, yeah, offer you his “THANKS FOREVER.”