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10 Examples of Near Field Communication

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Near field communication is a type of communication protocol that is short distance, low power and limited bandwidth. This has advantages for numerous applications whereby a short message is communicated a distance of a few inches between devices. The following are illustrative examples.


Exchanging contact details between phones. This has some security benefits as such messages are somewhat difficult to intercept due to their short range.


Communicating short bits of information such as a URL. For example, a smart poster for a movie that can send a link to a video to nearby devices.


Paying for things quickly by touching a mobile device or smart card to a payment acceptance device. This can work without having to remove the card from your wallet.


Tickets for events and transportation. This is a critical technology for train stations that handle a large number of customers during rush hour.


Secure access and identity cards such as employee IDs. Often used as one factor for multi-factor authentication. Near field communication is also commonly used as an entry key for things like apartment buildings and vehicles.


Used to configure things. For example, putting your mobile device up to a printer to configure access.


Tagging things for purposes such as asset tracking.


Commonly used in toys to allow separate components to work together. For example, a doll that knows what accessories it is wearing.

Feature Unlocking

A form of upgrade where features are unlocked when you buy new things. For example, a talking doll that learns new words when you buy it new clothing items.


Commonly used in game equipment such as controllers or mobile gaming devices. For example, near field communication that allows you to trade virtual items with other players.
Overview: Near Field Communication
A type of communication protocol that is short distance, low power and limited bandwidth.
Also Known As
Related Standards
ISO/IEC 18092 / ECMA-340
ISO/IEC 21481 / ECMA-352
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