Why would I want an NFC smartphone? [Video]
NFC is becoming the buzz word in the world of mobile phones. The abbreviation stands for Near Field Communication, and the technology enables devices to share small bits of data over shortl distances, ie by simply touching two devices together.
For those who regularly travel on the London Underground, the Oyster Card travel system will be a familiar example of NFC in action, but in this video we take a look at a few applications of NFC when used in smartphones – including Visa’s mobile payment service.
Smartphone NFC in action on the Samsung Galaxy S2 and Sony Xperia S
There are a growing number of NFC-enabled mobile phones launching in the UK, so we can expect to see the technology gradually become more commonplace.
Visa mobile payments on the Samsung Galaxy S2
Visa has partnered with Lloyds Bank and Samsung to deliver a mobile payment method using NFC.
The user pre-loads their account with money from their regular account, and can then make payments by touch at compatible check outs.
Small payments, those up to £20, can be carried out offline while larger payments require authorisation from the bank, which is completed online through the payment terminal. The larger payments require the user to enter a security number that only they know.
The user’s payment history can be viewed through the Visa app, and payments can be renamed so the user can keep track of their expenses.
Other NFC applications demonstrated on the Sony Xperia S
The Sony Xperia S comes with four Sony Xperia NFC tags. Each one of these can be used to initiate a number of user-selected apps on the handset when it comes into close proximity with the Xperia S handset.
For example, a tag may be left in the car and when the Xperia S is placed against it, the sat nav and Bluetooth audio applications could be initiated. Alternatively a tag may be left by the door to initiate the GPS tracking and fitness monitoring apps when the user leaves the house to go running.
Each Xperia NFC tag can instantly launch up to ten different apps at once. And as it’s the phone that recognises the NFC tag, this means each tag could be programmed to initiate different applications on a different user’s smartphone.
What do you think of NFC and its smartphone applications?
NFC is expected to be the ‘next big thing’ in the world of mobile phones and we’d like to hear your thoughts on the technology and how it could be implemented.
Do you have any concerns, or are there any particular applications where you’d like to see NFC used? Let us know in the comments below.
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