NFC Frequently Asked Questions (Part 2)

In the first part of this series, we have taken up a few of the most frequently asked questions regarding NFC. We have answered questions pertaining to NFC security, the difference between NFC and Wi-Fi/Bluetooth when it comes to connection, NFC applications other than cashless payments, and the amount of battery life an NFC connection takes.

Here’s another batch of common NFC-related questions:

Q: Why do technology experts predict a sudden and sharp increase in NFC-enabled devices when not too many people even know what NFC is?

A: It is because mobile phones are this era’s must-have gadget, and more and more people are coming up with new technologies that involve mobile devices. More and more people are finding ways to enable us to do normal tasks by phones – tasks like paying for our purchases. And with the increasing number of people using mobile payment services, we also see a remarkable expansion of NFC adoption in the handset market. Also, more and more banks and credit card companies are adopting NFC into their systems.

About not too many people knowing what NFC is, there is no problem with that. Once a technology is part of their mobile phones, they will learn about it and how to utilize it to their advantage.

Q: Many of the applications offered by NFC can be done by using RFID (radio frequency identification) and other existing technologies. So where does NFC technology fit in and how is it any better?

A: There will still be a place for RFID (and other similar technologies), especially with the fact that it can be read at long range, thanks to the frequency they work in. What sets NFC apart from RFID is the close proximity or the short range requirement in order to establish a connection.

Q: What is the difference between an NFC tag and an NFC-enabled phone? Between an NFC tag and a card?

A: An NFC tag is a passive device that stores data which can be read by an NFC-enabled device, usually a smartphone. An NFC-enabled device operates in reader/writer and peer-to-peer mode and may operate in card emulation mode.

An NFC tag and a card are technically the same thing. However, those contactless cards that are used in ticketing and payment now include additional technology to store secure info or data.

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