Airtel Payments Bank joined hands with Mastercard and local device brand Noise to launch a smartwatch designed to boost contactless transactions, highlighting its NFC payment system alongside other functionalities expected from a wearable.

In a statement, Airtel credited Mastercard for powering the smartwatch with an NFC chip to enable digital transactions at retail outlets, point-of-sale terminals and other touchpoints, which the operator group pitched as a more convenient alternative to mobile wallets or physical cards.

To activate the smartwatch’s payment feature, users will have to connect the handset with their Airtel bank account through the operator’s online payment platform Thanks App, where new customers can sign up to the bank digitally.

Once activated, “users can immediately commence making payments”, Airtel noted, adding a customer would be able to make transactions up to INR25,000 ($300) per day through the smartwatch.

This, the company believes, “will empower users to unlock the full potential of smart wearables and democratise convenient financial solutions”.

The wearable sports a 1.85-inch screen with a ten-day battery life and offers a roster of health and productivity apps.

Ganesh Ananthanarayanan, COO at Airtel Payments Bank, said the company “will be coming up with more options and innovative payment solutions to enhance the digital banking experience”.

Meanwhile, Noise co-founder Amit Khatri described the trio’s collaboration as a “significant stride in redefining the smart wearable experience”.

Airtel Payments Bank Smartwatch is priced at INR2,999 (US$36).