With Covid-19 pandemic putting digital payments at the centrestage, watches-to-jewellery maker Titan has taken contactless payments to another level by rolling out the country’s first contactless payments watches.
Called Titan Pay, the new range of watches has been launched in collaboration with State Bank of India (SBI) allowing its YONO account holders to tap the watch on contactless payment POS machines without the need of swiping or inserting the bank card.
The watch had been in the works for over two years, the launch of which was fast-tracked after the Covid pandemic outbreak. “We already felt that this product was something the future was ready for and because of Covid suddenly the future was here and now,” said Suparna Mitra, Chief Executive Officer, watches and wearables division, at Titan.
Titan Pay Women's Watch Rs 4,395
A secure Near-Field Communication (NFC) chip developed by start-up Tappy Technologies is embedded in the watch strap which enables this contactless transaction.The Canada-based company has developed these chips which can be embedded into any fashion accessory turning it into a smart payments wearable.
For SBI YONO registered users, there is an option called wearables on the app which takes the person through a three step process with the final step of keying in a unique identification number which comes with the watch to link it with the bank account.
Titan Pay Men's Watch Rs 2,995
Once a user waives the watch near a MasterCard-enabled Point-of-Sale (POS) machine, any payment of up to Rs 2,000 can be made without entering a PIN. The payment feature on these watches will be accessible on over two million contactless MasterCard-enabled POS machines in the country.
Titan Pay Women's Watch Rs 3,895
If the watch gets misplaced or stolen, the user will have to raise the issue with the bank or block the chip through the YONO app. “The product is perfectly secure and the transaction limit of Rs 2,000 which itself ensures that there is no big loss to the user,” said Rajnish Kumar, Chairman, SBI.
Priced between Rs 2,995 and Rs 5,995, the Titan Pay range will be available in five styles exclusively on the Titan website.
Titan Pay Men's Watch Rs 5,995
“Titan has always been at the pinnacle of design and innovation. We have always launched products to cater to the changing needs of our consumers. SBI is the perfect partner to introduce a payment solution for the new normal that is fast, secure and seamless,” said C K Venkataraman, Managing Director, Titan.
The lifestyle company has been investing heavily in research and development to develop smart watches, which will be ahead of their times and do things such as switching off lights, locking, and unlocking doors, the company had earlier told Business Standard.
The Tata Group company which launched its first smartwatch in 2016 sold over 17 million timepieces globally last year. However, Titan’s watches division, which accounts for 12-15 per cent revenue of the Bengaluru-headquartered company, was the worst hit during Q1 as demand for the accessory has drastically fallen after the Covid outbreak. The segment recorded a decline of 89 per cent in revenue for the quarter at Titan. Hence the company has been betting big on the gifting strategy to revive sales.