NFC is something you may have already heard of (kind of a feature new smartphones have), but was not sure what that was. This acronym stands for near field communication, a technology which has been invented not so long ago and which seem to have a bright future. What is so special in it?
Near field communication technology allows easily and intuitively use your smartphone for some special purposes. It provides contactless two-way communication between devices, which are located in close vicinity (1-4 cm) from each other, thus you may send and receive data with that.
Looks like something like Bluetooth? That’s right, but with NFC your device spends much less power and a wireless connection is established quicker. Also, there are no additional barriers like pairing or mutual discovery in NFC. It is easier to set up NFC than Wi-Fi or Bluetooth – it just starts working automatically! No need to launch any application. By the way, due to shorter range, the probability of unwanted interception is reduced to a minimum.
Speaking to the point, NFC uses short radio frequencies to establish automatic wireless connection between two devices.
What Is NFC Used For?
There are three basic application fields of NFC:
1. Card emulation: NFC-enabled device acts like smart proximity cards (used for performing transactions like payments and ticketing)
2. NFC for reading out info: NFC-enabled device reads info stored at RFID tag, embedded in smart posters and labels
3. Peer-to-peer mode: two NFC-enabled devices are connected with each other to exchange information
Currently the most popular applications that make available NFC payment are Google Wallet (for Android devices) and Apple Pay (for iPhones). Though, it should be mentioned that NFC Currently NFC is not fully supported at iOS devices so far. Android has the garland here.
This newly minted technique allows wide options for astute businessmen:
• NFC mobile payments, where a device serves as a contactless bank card. Instead of getting your standard bank card to pay for goods at the till, you may pay with your;
• NFC payment app, installed in your phone;
• Ticketing: Mobile purchases in public transport;
• Reading RFID tags from street boards and ads, similar to QR codes;
• Pairing Bluetooth devices with a single touch of two mobile phones.
Soon it is expected to serve various purposes like e-money, e-commerce, online ticketing, identity cards, travelers’ cards, software protection dongle and other fields of application.