Bump, Wave or Touch – NFC Technologies are Making Communication Easier

April 21, 2014 at 11:32 AM

You’ve probably seen commercials or perhaps have the kind of phone that you can bump with another phone to transfer contact information. 

There are a couple of differing technologies used for this type of data transfer.  There is a Bluetooth transfer and then there is the use of near field communication technology or NFC.  NFC uses wireless radio communication within a short range, usually 4” or less.  There is a chip in each of the phones to manage the data transfer.  With a limited amount of storage and an antenna, the chip itself is passive, in that it draws power from the device that reads the chip through magnetic induction. NFC technologies are also referred to as smart tags and info tags.

Use of NFC technology is endless and about to explode in a big way

You may already be familiar with RFID or radio frequency identification used by many companies in the parcel transportation business like, UPS and FedEx.  RFID technology is ideal for applications that require a longer distance and non-touch applications.  Retail stores frequently use RFID tags on their high value items.  The locking tags must be removed during checkout or you will trigger an alarm at the doors.

Tags and products where small bits of digital information are helpful is a great use of NFC technology.  Think about transferring photos, files, brief videos, a web address, your contact information, etc.  Applications might be within cards, stickers, labels and tags for vehicle id --securing directions or instructions, triggering an audio file for those with vision challenges, monitoring traffic on ski lifts, attendance in schools, providing education on product hazards, price tags integrated with payment systems...  It really is an endless field of opportunity for creativity and productivity strategies.

Are NFC tags the next bar code or QR code? 

They very well might be.  NFC chips are easy to program and can be rewritten over time and time again as needs or requirements change.  Printed bar codes and QR codes are not as easy to change as a digital signature.  The NFC chips have storage size options to match your project need.

 

SCN at the cutting edge of all new and emerging markets

NFC has already provided us the opportunity to partner with some great customers for some awesome new project results.

A manufacturer of gym and workout equipment was looking for a source for NFC decals that would launch a phone app that would start a workout regimen. We were happy to tell them that yes, we do make NFC decals.   

After a couple of successful prototypes, the customer placed a large order and are in the process of designing several more NFC decals for their other new projects and they are having great feedback from their end users about how much they enjoy their workout equipment with this added feature. With a bump or touch to the NFC decal the app is launched and recommended use of the equipment shown on the user’s phone.

Are you interested in learning more about this exciting technology and bringing your products and services the cutting edge?  Let’s start that conversation today.  



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