Despite being used increasingly around the globe, very few people truly understand the potential of NFC technology and how it works.

So… what is it?

NFC — Near Field Communication —is a close-proximity communication technology that allows for a secure, wireless exchange of information between devices from a distance a few inches.

NFC emerged in 2000 as a development to the already familiar radio frequency identification technology (RFID) which allows for compatible devices to communicate using radio waves. NFC technology immediately separated itself from its predecessor by managing to limit the distance of the frequency field to just 4 inches thus increasing security.

The result is that any two compatible devices with an NFC tag that are close enough to establish a connection can share information without any need for codes or settings. These devices can be smartphones, tablets, credit cards, electronic tickets or any other equipment that may contain an NFC tag.

NFC technology is currently used in a variety of different ways in business areas such as trade, transport, monitorisation and building maintenance. Each industry will use slightly different NFC tags that are carefully designed to best execute the task ahead. Read on to find out more about NFC tags in the above industries.

NFC in Trade

In trade, NFC technology is mostly found in contactless payment systems such as credit cards, electronic tickets and parking lots. NFC allows consumers to complete transactions without physical money in a swift and simple manner. In Portugal for example, we can see it being used by credit and debit cards, with the vast majority of providers already having incorporated NFC chip technology into their cards. You can now also make payments through mobile applications using NFC technology built into smartphones.

NFC in Transportation

One of the most widespread uses of NFC technology is in public transport. In many countries across the world, an NFC chip which is integrated into a smartphone enables commuters to enjoy a smoother and more sustainable travel experience. Users must simply tap their NFC compatible smartphone on the reader to purchase or validate their ticket, allowing them to travel without the hassle of waiting in long queues at the ticket office!

NFC in Vigilance

NFC technology is an intuitive and powerful tool which has allowed for a far more effective control over surveillance patrols. By using NFC tags, it is possible for any security company to ensure a guard’s  presence in any spot in real-time.

NFC in Building Maintenance

Efforts to simplify the protocols used in maintenance management can be hugely supported by NFC technology. It allows maintenance technicians to easily identify and consult information related to any device by simply swiping their smart phones on an active tag.

As explored in this article, NFC technology is already having a pronounced impact on modern industry and is becoming increasingly present in all categories of company and institution. It would appear that it will continue to be rolled out with new functions as we march towards a more interconnected society.