NFC (Near Field Communication)

Image: http://www.yourbdnews.comNFC (Near Field Communication) technology is a trending topic. NFC is designed to be embedded in mobile devices and it enables wireless communication between them. It has been criticized regarding its added value in contrast with other systems like Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. A possible response is that NFC is designed for short range communication (up to 20cm), minimizing the possibility of data interception and thus improving security. It also enables communication with passive tags, without power supply or batteries, and, last but not least, it can establish connections really fast.

The main use for this technology and the reason of its deployment is payment with NFC devices. Regardless of the many applications it suggests, payment is the one that attracts the interest of big enterprises, because NFC is supposed to substitute credit cards in a near future and everyone wants its share. Telcos (like Vodafone or Movistar) are willing to integrate NFC payments with phone billing, credit card multinationals (like Mastercard or Visa) and banks (like Bankinter or Citibank) need to keep playing a main role in electronic commerce, mobile operating systems developers (like Google or RIM) wish to charge their fees in money transactions relying on their software, and smartphone manufacturers (like Samsung or Nokia) want to leverage the NFC chip in their handsets.

Among the recent NFC projects we can mention the agreement between Vodafone and Renfe to enable NFC payment in suburban trains; Google Wallet, with Mastercard as an associate, which allows to pay in stores like Subway, Guess or Toys’R’Us; or project “Distrito NFC” of Movistar, whose “Cartera Movistar” application for employees allows access control and payments in Movistar headquarters. Regarding terminals, we can cite the NFC phones of Google (Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus), the Nokia 2011 models (C7, N9, 60X, 70X), Blackberry with OS v7 (Bold, Torch, Curve), some Samsung ones (Wave 587, Galaxy S2), and the NFC chips inserted into SIM and microSD cards, which enable NFC in phones not specifically designed for it.

Gradiant has some internal NFC projects and collaborations with industries. NFC possibilities are huge and it has a promising future