Two of the hottest subjects within the telecommunications industry right now are the recent announcement of Apple’s new iPhone 6 and the ever improving functionality of the NFC Chip, or ‘near field communications’. The capabilities of NFC functionality are usually centered on the ability to complete wireless mobile payments within your everyday life, using your Smartphone to pay rather than your credit card. However, developments in the chip’s technology suggest that we could be seeing more than just mobile payments alongside the launch of Apple’s new iPhone 6.
How does it work? The NFC Chip emits a specific set of radio frequencies that enables two devices in close proximity to be able to receive and exchange data, assuming both are NFC capable. While specifications for the new phone have to be officially confirmed, it is extremely likely that we will see this technology implemented into the new iPhone supported by partnerships with MasterCard, Visa and American Express.
Unknown to most though, NFC technology also has the capabilities to offer other functionality to mobile users. ‘Peer-to-peer’ and ‘reader/writer’ modes are also expected to be exploited by Apple to allow more advanced and personal methods of data sharing, device pairing and tag scanning.
The days of traditional Bluetooth connectivity with its monotonous pairing processes could well be in the past with the new peer-to-peer ability that NFC Chips support. Instant connectivity is just one of the advantages of NFC and while some products already have the NFC Chip built into them such as the Beats Speakers by Dr Dre, it is expected that the next generation of speaker and audio peripherals will also begin to use this technology.
Why? Making any process easier for the user is the ultimate goal for most new products and with Apple’s latest acquisition of Dr Dre’s Audio business, it is clear that they have a very large focus on this concept. Tap-to-pair functionality is just one example of this, which speaks for itself in regards to how it works and can already be found in several products on the market today.
Gone are the days of QR scanning – the new reader/writer functionality follows the same principle as the above tap-to-pair process, but instead offers you an option to view or process data instead. Ideal for marketing campaigns or use within Apple’s upcoming health app, it could be the future of engaging with everyday products via your mobile.