Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He’s written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times and Reader’s Digest, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami’s NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read nearly one billion times—and that’s just here at How-To Geek. Read more.
Your Android phone’s NFC hardware is for more than just transferring content and using mobile payments. You can buy cheap, programmable NFC tags and have your phone automatically perform actions when you touch them.
For example, you could place NFC tags on your bedside table, near your front door, in your car, and on your desk at work. Tapping your phone against them or placing it down on them could automatically select device settings that makes sense in that location.
What You’ll Need
You’ll need just two things for this. First, you’ll need an Android phone with NFC hardware in it — and most Android phones will now offer that. Lower-end Android phones may not include NFC hardware to keep costs low. You can perform a web search for your model of phone and “NFC” or just open its Settings screen. You’ll find the NFC option under more Wireless & networks options. Obviously, the NFC hardware must be enabled for everything else here to work.
Second, you’ll need programmable NFC tags. Search for NFC tags on a site like Amazon.com and you’ll find them available for a fairly low price. Some manufacturers make their own, branded ones — but you don’t need tags made by your Android phone’s manufacturer.
These tags don’t have batteries in them, but they do have a bit of memory. When you place your phone’s NFC reader near them, the NFC reader provides power to the tag, and can read the data from the tag. The tags are programmable, so you can write whatever data you want into the tag from your phone.
Programming the Tags
You’ll now need an app that can program the tags. Android doesn’t include one, but you can search for “nfc tags” on Google Play to find a lot of apps that can handle this for you — including free ones. For example, the NFC Tools app will let you write data to a tag and read the data already on tags.
Install such an app, open it, and choose the data you’d like to write to a tag. You may be able to lock a tag so it can’t be reprogrammed, which may be good if you’re leaving that tag in a public area. However, that means you will never be able to change the data on the tag in the future, so don’t use this option unless you have a good reason to.
Afterwards, you can tap the tag against the NFC reader on the back of your phone, and it’ll copy that data to the tag’s memory. Place the tag in a convenient location for the action you chose.
Using the Tags
Next, you’ll need an app that will respond to the tags. For example, if you used NFC Tools to write data to your tags, you can install the NFC Tasks app. When your phone reads an NFC tag you’ve written instructions to, the NFC Tools app will read the instructions from that NFC tag and perform them.
You can then just place the tags somewhere convenient. Place them on a table, and then place your phone on them when you want to perform the action. Fasten them to a wall near a door if you want to tap your phone against a tag when you leave or enter an area. It’s up to you what you want to use these tags for. The uses are practically endless.
For example, if you regularly need to set an hour-long timer when you do your laundry, you can program an NFC tag to start an hour-long timer and place it next to your laundry machine. Set your phone down on that tag or tap it and it’ll start the laundry rimer. If you regularly pair your phone with a Bluetooth keyboard, you could affix an NFC tag to the back of the keyboard and tap your phone against it to automatically go through the Bluetooth pairing process.
Or, you can set up a tag with your Wi-Fi details, and guests can just tap their phones against the NFC tag to connect to your Wi-Fi network without locating it and entering a passcode. They would need an appropriate app installed on their phone to do this, however.
Apple’s iPhone 6 does have NFC hardware, but apps can’t use it — it’s currently just for Apple Pay. Future software updates might allow you to do more with it, but you can’t right now. Windows Phone does have some support for this as well, so iPhone users are the only ones left out right now.
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Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He’s written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times and Reader’s Digest, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami’s NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read nearly one billion times—and that’s just here at How-To Geek.
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The NFC hype isn’t what it once was, but it’s still a handy feature you should take advantage of, or at least get to know. How does NFC work, and how do you use it? We’ll walk you through how to use it, as well as everything else you need to know about it.
Editor’s note: All instructions in this post were created using a Pixel 4a with 5G running Android 12. Keep in mind steps may differ depending on your specific smartphone and Android version.
What is NFC?
The name for the technology gives away how it works. NFC stands for “Near Field Communication.” You have two NFC-capable devices or accessories, and they can communicate with each other if they are close to each other (i.e., “near” each other’s “fields”). Communication occurs via radio frequencies.
NFC is mainly marketed as a payment method in the mobile scene, but it can also be used for other purposes. You can learn more about the technology in the article linked below. Continue reading if you want to learn how to use it for different tasks.
Do you have NFC?
It’s now hard to find a phone without this feature, as it’s now a standard. You can even find it on most budget phones, but there are some ways to double-check if you aren’t sure.
Older phones made it more obvious, as this was a hot feature only some devices had. Some had NFC labeling, usually found somewhere in the back of the device. You would also see “Near Field Communication” printed on the battery on certain Samsung phones, but nowadays, you don’t ever see the battery. Things have changed.
Sony is one of the very few manufacturers still labeling NFC capabilities. You’ll see the N-Mark on the back of some devices, the official symbol indicating that the device has Near Field Communication. The N-Mark also shows the exact location of the chip.
Alternatively, you can skip all of the hardware fiddling and check your phone’s settings.
How to find out if your Android phone has NFC:
- On your Android device, open the Settings.
- Select Connected devices.
- Tap on Connection preferences.
- You should see NFC options.
- If the option is there, the phone has the feature.
If your device has NFC, you might need to activate the chip first. Sometimes it comes dormant by default, so look into the settings to make sure.
How to activate NFC on Android:
- On your Android device, open the Settings app.
- Select Connected devices.
- Tap on Connection preferences.
- You should see the NFC option. Hit it.
- Toggle the Use NFC option on.
Android Beam is dead!
We haven’t talked about sharing photos, videos, contacts, and other files using NFC, and that’s because Android no longer supports this feature. The feature was called Android Beam, and it used multiple communication tools for transferring files.
Android Beam died with the release of Android 10, and has since been replaced by Nearby Share. This tool is more similar to Apple’s AirDrop. It can transfer files to devices within close proximity, entirely wirelessly. Nearby Share starts the connection using your location and Bluetooth. Depending on what you’re sharing, it will pick between Bluetooth, Bluetooth LE, WebRTC, or Wi-Fi to share the file.
As you can see, NFC is no longer part of the equation, so you can’t officially use it to share files, photos, content, apps, and other files. This is sad, considering this was one of the coolest ways to utilize NFC.
Pay with your phone!
No matter how common and how long the feature has been around, paying with your phone still makes us feel like we’re living in the future. This feature relies heavily on NFC communications, and it’s likely what most people have used it for since the death of Android Beam.
There are quite a few mobile payment solutions, with the most popular ones being Google Pay and Samsung Pay. There’s also Apple Pay, but the service doesn’t work with Android devices. LG Pay was another option, but it was discontinued in 2021.
To make payments with your phone, you first need to sign up for one of the payment methods available. Samsung Pay is only compatible with Samsung devices, while Google Pay works on handsets running Android 5.0 Lollipop and higher. You can start making payments at supported retailers when you set up the app and enter your payment details. Check the guides linked below to learn how to use each service fully.
Using NFC tags
Apart from mobile payments, using NFC tags is a great way to take advantage of this technology. You can use these to automate specific tasks when you tap on them with your smartphone’s NFC chip. It’s also possible to use tags to sign into a Wi-Fi network, obtain business information, control smart lights, access a website, and much more. You can get creative, too. Imagine walking into an office and tapping your phone on an NFC tag at the door. You can set this tag to unlock your smart lock, turn on the lights, activate the AC, turn Wi-Fi on, and get your smart coffee maker started.
An NFC tag is an unpowered chip, small enough to be embedded in items such as posters, movie passes, business cards, medication bottles, stickers, wristbands, key fobs, pens, hang tags, and more. This means it’s easy to stick them around any business or living area. You can dig deeper into the technology in the post linked right below.
You’ll need an NFC tag-writing app to set up the tags, such as the Trigger app. Once programmed, you can tap any NFC-enabled device on the tag and take advantage of its benefits. Trigger can interact with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Audio, display, alarms, calendars, social networks, navigation, Tasker tasks, and more.
The technology exists, it's just a huge issue that many stores don't want to invest money to offer this service yet. I really hope this will change soon.
I agree. This is that article summed up "Turn off wifi in the car. Turn off wifi in the office. Turn off wifi when you go to bed."
I get it, with NFC I can turn off wifi pretty easily.
I agree. I never want wifi disabled, i don't use bluetooth in the car, I don't frequently use nav. I'm having a very hard time figuring out what to do with these tags I have laying around.
Here in Australia the technology exists in stores, but Google Wallet isn't supported here and there are no banking apps that make proper use of NFC.
Paywave and Paypass have taken off in a big way (all of our major supermarkets and most of our department stores have NFC readers) but I think it's our banking regulations that are somehow preventing Google Wallet here.
A lot of 7elevenns have nfc
I've been paying for coffee from 7/11 and Wawa with my phone pretty regularly.
Agree I'd love to see some more uses. The best use so far is at work we have nfc tags on all the computer we ship out for training and it contains all the info we need to know whenever we get them back in (amazing when you have 8+ identical looking computers next to each other).
In london mosy places accept barclaycard payments via NFC for up to £10
There isn't enough demand for it, except by a tiny vocal minority from places like r/android.
Alarm Clock NFC. I HATE getting out of bed before the sun is up, but my job requires it. Most phone alarms have a swipe to snooze and that became an almost automated response for me. Now I have an NFC tag in my bathroom that I have to swipe with my phone to shut the alarm off. I curse the damn thing all the way to the bathroom, but it works like a charm. I'm going on 4 weeks of being on time for work. Even if this is the only functionality I ever get out of NFC, it has changed my daily routine.
This is genius. Downloading now. I have a timeliness problem. I'll be cursing you all the way to the bathroom tomorrow but for now I'll thank you.
Sleep as an droid is much more robust! It includes sleep tracking!
Does that app work for you? I uninstalled because it wouldn't work some days.
I remember hearing about a version of this that used a QR code. Anyone have a link?
Just wanted to share for those who may not have seen it yet.
[place number 11: Bathroom Task: WiFi, Media Vol:10, Ringtone 0, Google Chrome, Incognito Tab] (http://l.yimg.com/ck/image/A2270/2270082/300_2270082.png)
I thought having a boner must help people poop when I was a kid.
My favorite use:
Living in the city, I park in a different spot every day. So instead of forgetting where I park, I have a tag on my keychain and one in my car.
When I park, I tap the one in the car, it saves the GPS tag.
When I want to find my car, tap the one on my keychain and it shows where I parked on a map.
I love NFC & Tasker
If you have a car profile in Tasker, an easy way to do this is just to "Add Exit Task" where your car exit task contains the location storage logic. Now you don't have to worry about forgetting! I do this and it works great!
Is the bank balance via SMS?
How do I set this sort of thing up?
10 Ways? Seems more like 1 use case (reconfigure your phone based on location/activity) beaten to death. I was in rather high hopes to find something more creative . like instructions for a party game that involves carrying data around or something.
You a programmer by any chance? That actually seems like a pretty cool game waiting to happen. Maybe something in a "story so far" type of thing where you touch your phone to the tag, you get the last X amount of characters in an ongoing story . then you add Y characters and write the story back out. After the story reaches a certain number of entries, the story is complete and anybody tapping the tag gets the whole story beginning to end. Now go stick the tag, with some quick instructions printed on a card to go with it, on a wall in a coffee shop somewhere. Then come back in a week.
Or a variation on that – write a story. Store the entire story on the tag. But the tag and its associated app will only unveil the story at a certain pace, so you have to come back next week to get the next chapter.
Or a scavenger hunt – stick tags all over town. Each tag unveils information about where to find the next one.
Or how about a party game? Everybody gets a tag. Everybody uses the app to write something out to the tag. Then the tags are thrown into a pile. Then you pick a tag, touch it and have your phone read you what was written, then you have to guess whose tag it is and give it back to the person. That person taps the tag to her phone, and either dings or buzzes depending on your successful guess.
Programming an NFC tag from your NFC-capable Android device is extremely easy and can lend itself to some very useful scenarios.
Contributing Writer, ZDNet
Jason Cipriani is based out of beautiful Colorado and has been covering mobile technology news and reviewing the latest gadgets for the last six years. His work can also be found on sister site CNET in the How To section, as well as across several more online publications.
It’s starting to look like NFC tags are going to be all the rage soon.
Between Sony and rumors of Apple working with MasterCard, NFC is going to go mainstream. So why wait? If you already have an NFC-capable device, you can start using NFC around your home or office, and have fun with it while you’re at it.
To program an NFC tag, you will need an Android device with NFC capabilities. You will also need some NFC tags, which appear to be nothing more than a sticker on the outside, as well as an app that allows you to write to the tags.
I bought some tags from a vendor on Amazon, where you can find plenty of tags for a reasonable price. Make sure you buy preformatted tags; doing so will ensure you avoid any issues with formatting. As for the Android app, I’m using NFC Task Launcher. You can find it in the Android Market for $1.99.
Make sure to watch the above video to see a quick demo of creating a tag that toggles your device’s Wi-Fi state. This would come in handy if the tag was placed next to your front door, or wherever you normally sat down your phone as you get home from work. Tapping the tag would then turn on your device’s Wi-Fi, allowing it to connect to your home network. Similarly, you could then tap your device on the same tag as you are leaving the house to turn Wi-Fi off.
There is much, much more that can be done with NFC tags and your device. This is just scratching the surface. Over the coming days and weeks I will go through some creative uses, as well as just some extremely handy uses of NFC and NFC tags. If you have an idea, or are currently using a setup similar to this, feel free to share in the comments below!
Share files, make mobile payments, and more with NFC technology
- New York University
In This Article
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Near field communication (NFC) makes it possible to exchange information between smartphones and other smart devices quickly. Uses for NFC on Android phones include file sharing, contactless payment systems, and programmable NFC tags.
The information below applies to any Android phone: Samsung, Google, Huawei, Xiaomi, or other manufacturers.
Share Content With Other Android Devices
With programs like Nearby Share (an AirDrop competitor introduced by Google), it’s possible to share pictures, videos, web pages, contact information, and other types of data with others nearby. For example, share a photo after it’s snapped or exchange contact information at a networking event without having to search for a pen. Nearby Share replaced Android Beam, which has been deprecated.
Pay With Your Smartphone at the Register With Android Pay
In a contactless payment system, customers swipe their smartphones instead of pulling out their credit cards at the cash register. With NFC enabled, you can store your credit card information in Google Pay or Samsung Pay and swipe your smartphone during checkout. Credit card companies have gotten into the game with Mastercard PayPass and Visa payWave.
Program NFC Tags
NFC tags are small unpowered NFC chips that can be programmed to do specific things when swiped. For example, program these devices to do simple actions such as activate wireless tethering, launch apps depending on your location, dim the phone screen at bedtime, turn off notifications, or set alarms and timers. You can also set up more complicated processes such as booting your PC.
Programming an NFC tag is easy, and you’ll need to download an app to do so. Many apps are available in the Google Play Store, such as NFC Tools and NFC TagWriter. You can also use an NFC tag on your business card so that new contacts can save your information in a snap.
Share Your Wi-Fi Network Via NFC
When you have guests over, don't give them your Wi-Fi password. Instead, use an NFC tag to share it. This method is more secure since your guests won't know the password.
Your guests must install a free NFC reader app, such as NFC Reader, on their smartphones to use your NFC tags.
There are many ways to program your NFC tags. If you want to do generic actions like – text, open certain URL, toggle system settings, etc, you can use apps like NFC tools. It’s free and easy to use for simple stuff. However, since we are talking about programming NFC tags, in this article, I’ll program my NFC tag to automate my morning and night routine.
For example, I have programmed one of my NFC tags to the night-morning mode and placed it near my bed. So every day when I go to bed I don’t have to worry about setting up my phone to sleep mode. All I need to do is just tap my phone on the NFC tag and everything is automatically set. Here’s how it look.
Night – Disable WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS and open my journal app (I prefer to log my daily diet, and what I did during the day in my goal tracking app Goqii).
Morning – Enable, WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS. And also give me a reminder to drink water and open my Workout app, so that I prepare for my Gym schedule accordingly. Also, it reminds me to have my pre-workout meal.
This is a small use case of NFC tags in life but there are many other awesome things you can do, depending on how creative you are.
- NFC tags
- NFC enables smartphones
- Apps to program for example trigger
Program NFC Tags on Android
There are many applications in the play store which lets you program NFC, but my favorite is Trigger as it is free, easy to use, and offer a lot of suggested template such as – save time when driving, silence my phone while I sleep, etc.
The app works in two parts – trigger and actions. Trigger as the name suggest, is what starts the action, in this case, the trigger will be bringing the phone near NFC tags, and actions will be toggle WiFi, Bluetooth, etc.
Follow the simple steps to program NFC chips
1. Download and install Trigger from Play Store.
2. After launching the application, we need to create a new Task. Go to ‘My Task’ and tap on small plus icon at the bottom right.
3. In the next window ‘Add a Trigger’ tap on ‘NFC’ as a trigger.
4. Once selected click on’ Next’ to Configure NFC task.
5. In the next step, you can fine-tune the trigger by adding restrictions (like date, time, Wi-Fi, etc). However, this is optional, if you want to trigger actions each time you tap on NFC, you can skip this step by tapping on ‘Done’.
6. Now, you need to choose the action you want to perform once your phone comes in contact with NFC tag. This is where all the magic happens. To get started, tap on ‘Next’.
In the next screen, you will see various options – Wireless & Networks, Bluetooth, Display, Social Media, Application, etc.
For this instance, follow these steps.
- Wireless & Networks > WiFi On/Off – check
- Wireless & Networks > GPS On/Off – check (requires root)
- Bluetooth > Bluetooth On/Off – check
- Applications & Shortcuts > Open Applications – check
- Applications & Shortcuts > Speak Text – check
A new popup window will open, configure the following actions
- WiFi On/Off – Disable
- GPS On/Off – Disable
- Bluetooth On/Off – Disable
- Open Application – Goqii
- Speak Text – ‘Remember to stay hydrated’
Once done tap on Next and in the next screen, give your task a name, and tap on Next.
Next, select the switch task that will get a Triggered in the morning, the process is pretty much the same. Tap on the plus icon on the top and repeat the following actions. Let’s call it ‘Morning Mode’.
- Wireless & Networks > WiFi On/Off – check
- Wireless & Networks > GPS On/Off – check (requires root)
- Bluetooth > Bluetooth On/Off – check
- Applications & Shortcuts > Open Applications – check
- Applications & Shortcuts > Speak Text – check
A new popup window will open, configure the following actions
- WiFi On/Off – Enable
- GPS On/Off – Enable
- Bluetooth On/Off – Enable
- Open Application – Fitvate
- Speak Text – ‘Remember pre-workout meal’
Once you are satisfied with changes, tap on ‘Add to tasks’ and give the task a name like ‘Morning Mode’ and tap on Done.
Bring the NFC tag near the back of your phone. All the information will get written on the tags instantaneously.
Lets put it to test.
To copy NFC tag or erase its data, tap on the hamburger icon on the top left and select ‘Other NFC Actions’.
Now you can use this tag with any NFC enabled device. However, unless you are doing a generic action like – text, open certain URL, toggle system settings, etc, you will need to install the trigger app on each phone you want to use to carry out complex actions as we have seen above.
Program NFC Tags in Windows
Nokia NFC Writer is the most popular for writing NFC tags on Windows Phone. However, this was the only application I could find even though I was not impressed by its performance.
If you can also write your NFC chip from your Windows PC with the help of GoTo tags. However, you will need to buy an additional NFC reader and writer to read/write NFC tags to your PC.
How to program NFC tags on the iPhone
iPhone 6 and above are all equipped with NFC but you couldn’t use the hardware to write NFC tags, until iOS 13. If you use an iPhone 7 or above and it’s running iOS 13 or above then you can easily write custom NFC tags. You can check out this quick tutorial to create your own NFC tags.
This tutorial was a brief example of how to program an NFC Tags. Obviously, you can do much with your NFC Tags depending on your creativity. How are/will you use NFC Tags? Share with me using the comments below.
How to use NFC tag with your Android Phone? Setting Alarms: For those of you perpetually late deep sleepers, there’s a special app for creating alarms using NFC called Puzzle Alarm Clock. Its fiendishly simple premise: In order to disarm the alarm, you must tap the phone against a special NFC tag designed to shut the alarm off. Car Mode: One of my most useful NFC tags automatically turns my phone into a car guidance system. The best place to buy NFC tags from is from recycled sources, such as old hotel keys.
Differing forms and technologies: NFC tags can appear in a variety of differing forms, from key chains to credit cards. I prefer using NFC stickers, which contain the basic circuitry needed, in addition to an adhesive side. For example, the Nexus 4 supports the NTAG230 NFC standard, whereas the majority of devices (but not all) use the MIFARE Classic 1K tags. As a matter of fact, NFC chips will be incorporated right into your smartphone’s circuitry.
Virtually all CXJ NFC tags can be read by NFC-enabled devices but some cannot be written to. Other tags may not possess the necessary quantity of writable memory required by some memory intensive applications. They’re cheap and the technology is all over the place, although primarily outside the US. Right now NFC mainly is used to streamline behaviors that you would normally take minutes doing – such as finding and entering a Wi-Fi password, or setting your alarm before going to sleep.
Ultimately, whether or not you get a billionaire’s experience out of NFC hinges entirely on your own creativity. About 20 percent of phones worldwide might have NFC capabilities by 2014 source: Juniper With the widespread reach of NFC phones, NFC tags could one day become as commonplace as bar codes. For example, you could place NFC tags on your bedside table, near your front door, in your car, and on your desk at work.
Or, at your favorite restaurants, you can touch your phone to an NFC tagged menu and voila – you have the entire menu on your phone, along with nutritional information and mouth-watering descriptions of the ingredients in your favorite dishes. First, you’ll need an Android phone with NFC hardware in it — and most Android phones will now offer that. Search for NFC tags on a site like and you’ll find them available for a fairly low price. When you place your phone’s NFC reader near them, the NFC reader provides power to the tag, and can read the data from the tag. For example, the NFC Tools app will let you write data to a tag and read the data already on tags.
Kickstart your NFC project with this simple guide and starter code.
Near-Field-Communication (NFC) isn’t new technology. With the events of Covid 19, there has been a surge in contactless NFC usage as seen by the new trend of mobile payment like Google Pay and Apple Pay. This is similar to its well-known brother, QR codes.
It has come a long way. First used in 1997 for Hasbro Star Wars toys, the now highly accessible tech which currently exists in around 73% of smartphones, is an untapped source for innovation.
Similar to my previous article on installing TF lite for Raspberry Pi, finding useful NFC material was a chore. This is meant to be a quick and clear guide for the general-use cases of NFCs.
Complete Code on my Github: starter code
- Android Studio — Installation guide here.
- An Android Phone with NFC capabilities (How to check if I have NFC?)
- NFC Device (Note: I used an NFC card)
We will first detect the NFC device information:
1. NFC id
2. NFC Technologies
3. NFC type (Mifare Classic/Ultralight)
Note: We will be using the Mifare Ultralight C for this guide.
Step 0: AndroidManifest.xml, Allow NFC permissions for our app
Step 1: onCreate, Initialize the NFC adapter and define the Pending Intent
Step 2: onResume(), Enable the Foreground Dispatch to listen for NFC intent (Waiting for NFC card to be tapped)
enableForegroundDispatch allows your current (foreground) activity to intercept our NFC intent and claim priority over all other activities both within the app and other apps.
Step 3: onPause(), Disable the foreground dispatch (Stop listening for NFC tag)
Step 4: onNewIntent(), Process our new NFC Intent (Card detected)
After getting the intent, you have to parse the intent to detect the card: Code here for external helper functions.
These are our NFC Intent filters
nfcAdapter.ACTION_TAG_DISCOVERED — NFC tag discovered.
nfcAdapter.ACTION_TECH_DISCOVERED — NFC tag discovered and activities are registered for the specific technologies on the tag.
nfcAdapter.ACTION_NDEF_DISCOVERED — NFC tag discovered with NDEF payload discovered.
TAG_DISCOVERED is meant to be a fallback if no apps can handle TECH_DISCOVERED and NDEF_DISCOVERED . The same for TECH_DISCOVERED which is meant to be a fallback for NDEF_DISCOVERED .
For our case, we don’t want any filters as such we will be using TAG_DISCOVERED and TECH_DISCOVERED for global detection of the NFC.
Step 5: Helper functions, to detect and parse our NFC Tag Data
Step 6: Compile and Run the app → Go to Logcat/Run
From our Mifare Ultralight C NFC Tag specifications: https://www.nxp.com/docs/en/data-sheet/MF0ICU2.pdf
We can only use the 4th to 39th-page address. Each page is 4 bytes, thus, we have at most 140 bytes of storage page.
Since each String letter in UTF-8 takes up around 1 byte, We only at most 140 words to work with assuming that none of our user memory pages are used. In my case, we only had 137 bytes in our card. Some had experimented with gzip to compress this data.
Each readPages reads 4 pages (16 characters/16 bytes).
To read pages 4–12, we have to readPages(4) [pages 4–7] and readPages(8) [pages 8–11] and readPages(12) [pages 12–15]. We would then have to remove the extra 3 pages(12 characters/12 bytes) from our String.
Each writePage writes 1 page(4 characters/4 bytes).
Next, simply change our previous detectTagData(Tag tag).
If you want to be able to read and write your NFC in the background or outside your app, simply add this intent filter in your AndroidManifest.xml.
The idea of global usage is to have NFC presence at anywhere on the phone.
Complete Code on my Github: starter code
From what I have understood so far, an NFC phone will act as an NFC reader which will read data from an NFC tag. Now my question is, can we switch this around? Can we make an Android NFC phone behave as the tag which an NFC reader will get data from?
Thanks for your assistance.
14 Answers 14
Help us improve our answers.
Are the answers below sorted in a way that puts the best answer at or near the top?
At this time, I would answer “no” or “with difficulty”, but that could change over time as the android NFC API evolves.
There are three modes of NFC interaction:
Reader-Writer: The phone reads tags and writes to them. It’s not emulating a card instead an NFC reader/writer device. Hence, you can’t emulate a tag in this mode.
Peer-to-peer: the phone can read and pass back ndef messages. If the tag reader supports peer-to-peer mode, then the phone could possibly act as a tag. However, I’m not sure if android uses its own protocol on top of the LLCP protocol (NFC logical link protocol), which would then prevent most readers from treating the phone as an nfc tag.
Card-emulation mode: the phone uses a secure element to emulate a smart card or other contactless device. I am not sure if this is launched yet, but could provide promising. However, using the secure element might require the hardware vendor or some other person to verify your app / give it permissions to access the secure element. It’s not as simple as creating a regular NFC android app.
A real question would be: why are you trying to emulate a simple old nfc tag? Is there some application I’m not thinking of? Usually, you’d want to emulate something like a transit card, access key, or credit card which would require a secure element (I think, but not sure).
Editor in Chief/Review Geek
Cameron Summerson is ex-Editor-in-Chief of Review Geek and served as an Editorial Advisor for How-To Geek and LifeSavvy. He covered technology for a decade and wrote over 4,000 articles and hundreds of product reviews in that time. He’s been published in print magazines and quoted as a smartphone expert in the New York Times. Read more.
Android Auto recently made its way to phones, eliminating the need for a $1000+ head unit to get its road-friendly features. And while you can set Auto to automatically launch when a specific Bluetooth device (like your car) is connected, what about those who may not have a Bluetooth-enabled car stereo? NFC is the answer.
NFC—or Near Field Communication— is a simple but relatively modern technology that allows phones to communicate wirelessly with just with a tap. Two NFC-equipped phones can send data to each other this way, but it’s more commonly used with NFC “tags”: small programmable chips that make it incredibly easy to share data or launch activities. NFC is also used for Android Pay (and Apple Pay for iOS users). NFC chips are incredibly inexpensive, with bundles of 10-12 usually going for around $8 to $10. That’s a lot of utility for not a lot of money.
One very cool, yet very simple thing you can do to make your life easier is write Android Auto to an NFC tag—an NFC key chain would be great for this—so you can instantly launch it as soon as you get in the car. If you have a dock for your phone, you could even write this data to a tag and stick it to the dock—this way, as soon as you drop your phone in the dock, boom: Auto pops up on the screen.
Once you have your tags in-hand, you’ll need to install an app that can write to the tag. We’ll be using NFC Tools for this tutorial, as it’s easy to use and full-featured.
With the app installed, go ahead and launch it. A tutorial explaining NFC will start—if you’re curious about NFC, read it. It’s helpful! After the tutorial, you’re going to need to erase your tag. Tap the “Other” tab in NFC Tools, then tap the “Erase Tag” option.
It will start looking for a tag here—just rub the tag around on the back of your phone till it gives some sort of audible notification. The NFC chip is located in different places on different phones, so you may have to fiddle with it a bit before you find yours. Once the tag has been erased, the app will give a notification.
Now that the tag is clean and ready for data, move over to the “Write” tab. This is where you’ll set everything up to add Android Auto to the tag. Tap the “Add record” button to get started. There are a slew of different options here (all things you can do with NFC!), but you’re looking for one in particular: Application. Find that option (it’s closer to the bottom of the list) and tap it.
The next screen will prompt you to “Enter your package name,” but I can’t imagine most users know the exact name of what they’re looking for, so instead tap the icon next to the text box. This will launch a list of all the installed applications. Find Android Auto and tap it.
With Auto selected, tap the “OK” button at the bottom.
Now, you can add more functions here if you’d like. For example, you can have the tag automatically disable Wi-Fi and enable Bluetooth alongside launching Android Auto. Just tap the “Add a record” button to add more functionality. For the sake of this tutorial, however, we’re going to stick with just launching Auto.
With everything set and ready to go, tap the “Write” button. The same dialog from earlier (when you were erasing the tag) will appear. Tap the tag on the phone again. Once again, a notification will show up once it’s finished writing—this will only take a split-second.
That’s it! Now all you have to do is tap your phone on the tag (with the display on, of course), and Android Auto will launch instantly. Handy!
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Cameron Summerson is ex-Editor-in-Chief of Review Geek and served as an Editorial Advisor for How-To Geek and LifeSavvy. He covered technology for a decade and wrote over 4,000 articles and hundreds of product reviews in that time. He’s been published in print magazines and quoted as a smartphone expert in the New York Times.
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Near Field Communication or commonly knows as NFC is a feature provided on smartphones. Many of you might wonder what NFC is? Well, with NFC, smartphones are capable of sending data to other NFC enabled devices by bringing them in contact with each other. With this feature, users can send various types of data like images, music, apps and many other files from one device to another.
Not only this, but NFC is also capable of making payments. Also, it allows programming commands to various NFC tags and read them. NFC also uses Android beam for connecting and sending files to other devices whether phone or tablets. But how does NFC work? Here we are going to show you the methods to use NFC on Android devices to transfer files and other data.
Use NFC To Transfer Files
Well, nowadays most of the smartphones come with NFC chips pre-installed. Here we have used Samsung Galaxy S8 to show you the steps of using the NFC on Android devices. In some of the devices like Sony, you will see the official NFC’s logo on the back of the device, but for other Android devices, you can check in the settings of your device to see whether it has the NFC option or not. So, let’s see how to set up and use NFC.
Go to the Settings of your Android devices and in there select Connections. Inside connections, you will see NFC and payments options tap on it or just switch the toggle button on to activate the NFC. This will activate the NFC and Android beam on the device.
You can also activate NFC from the notification panel. Draw the notification panel down there you will see the NFC option, you may have to swipe left to get more buttons. After locating it, tap on the NFC logo and it will light up enabling NFC. This option may or may not be available on every device.
After you have activated NFC on your device, do the same on the target device to which you will send the data. After this, on your device open the file, image, webpage, audio etc. that you want to share.
Now once the file that you want to send is open, bring both the device closer and touch the back of the devices with each other. Once your device detects the other device, it will notify you with a sound and vibration.
The device screen from which you are sending the file will show the text saying Touch to beam. Tap the screen and the and both the device will show the notification of file being transferred. It’s that simple.
Note: Do not remove or separate the device unless the beaming has started. Once the transfer is complete you will be able to access the sent file on the target device.
NFC is widely used nowadays to decrease the time and process used in small bits of data or information transfer. There are wide ranges of NFC programmable Tags into which you can add commands. Once the device or any other NFC capable electronics comes in contact with NFC tag, it will run the command or any programme you have embedded in it. For example, activating silent mode, or other key features like sending messages etc. You can use NFC programmable apps to do so.
Now coming to data transfer on Android smartphones via NFC and Android Beam, you can use it to send files like images, videos, music by following the given steps above. Not only this, but you can also share YouTube videos, web pages and Apps from Play Store. Just open the desired YouTube video, webpage on the browser or app in the Play Store and bring the device close to each other.
It will open the video on the YouTube app or any browser available on the target device. And for the Play Store apps and web pages, it will open in the receivers Play Store and Web browsers respectively. At last payments, you can also use NFC to make payments to certain card swiping machines. Just tap your device to the machine at it will read the NFC program for your account or the card with which you are making payments from. Now you can make payments without carrying credit or debit cards just using NFC. Cool, isn’t it?
With NFC you can save a lot of time by sending files or making payments on the go. Remember for sending files on tablets or phones both, the sender and receiver should have NFC and both the device should touch each other from the back, then only it will work. Hope you now know what NFC is and how it works. What do you think about NFC? Do let us know in the comments below.
There is no shortage of Android apps for NFC, some are made for reading and writing NFC tags, while others perform specific tasks like unlocking your smartphone, setting up a smart alarm and sharing WiFi, etc. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the popular NFC apps for Android. Let’s begin.
Android Apps to Use NFC Tags
1. NFC Tools
It’s a simple app which lets you read, write or erase NFC tags.
Once you open the app, you see 4 tabs on the top – Read, Write, Others, Tasks. The Read option lets you read the maker, serial number and type of the tag. With Write option, you can write basic information to the tags like – text, URL, phone number, etc. And taping on ‘Others’, give you advance options such as formatting the card, setting a password, etc.
Overal, if you all you need to do is basic functions, NFC Tools should be sufficient for you.
While NFC tools let you perform a single action with your NFC tags, Trigger specializes in tasks that require a chain of action. For example, if I want to toggle WiFi with my NFC tag, I’ll prefer NFC Tools but, if I want to set a night routine on NFC tag that will turn off WiFi, Bluetooth, and then open my journal app, I’ll use Trigger app.
The app works in the principal of IFTTT and tasker. That’s there are two parts – trigger and action. The trigger is when you phone come in contact with NFC tag and action is a series of tasks it does after it.
The best part about Trigger, it also offers plugins and let you integrate your tasks with Tasker which is another automation Android app. Here is a detailed article on how to use the Trigger app to program NFC tags.
3. Sleep As Android
If you are not a morning person, this is the app you need.
Sleep As Android is a smart alarm app which works with NFC too. You can set an alarm which will only go off by scanning the NFC tags. And then place NFC tags away from your bed like in the bathroom or kitchen. And in the morning when the alarm will turn ON, you will have to get up from your bed and scan the NFC tag to turned it off.
It also provides intelligent sleep tracking using the phone’s sensor, but my favourite feature is that you can also set the app as an admin, so you can’t just close the app to bypass the alarm.
However, the steps to set up the NFC tag with Sleep As Android is buried under settings. To create a new alarm, tap on the three vertical dots next to it. A new window will open, scroll down to Miscellaneous and look for CAPTHA: Stop oversleeping option, tap on it and select NFC tag. From here you can just follow on-screen instructions.
4. NFC TagWriter by NXP
Developed by the leading NFC hardware manufacture NXP semiconductors, this app comes in handy for tasks like copying and formatting tags.
It is similar to trigger but also offer advance features like viewing the content of the tag, erasing it or writing it permanently with it read-only. If you have lots of QR code lying around that you want to convert into NFC, you can use this to convert QR Codes into NFC data sets.
InstaWifi helps you share your WiFi password using the NFC tags.
Instead of revealing your WiFi password, simply write it in the NFC tags and stick it near the router. Your guest needs to scan the NFC tag to get WiFi access. Although, this app is only useful when your friends have NFC supported smartphones and have to installed this same app on their smartphones as well.
Alternatively, you can use the QR code feature built-in this app. Your friend can log in by scanning this code from any QR code reader app, which they might already have and if not then they won’t mind it downloading.
6. NFC TagInfo by NXP
Useful if you want to look into your NFC tags. Similar to NXP tag writer it’s also developed by NXP semiconductor. This app is particularly useful to the developers. Using this app you can analyze complete tag memory layout, identify tag type, manufacturer, how much memory is left in the card and check the NDEF record on it. Check it out if you are an NFC developer.
7. NFC ReTag
With this app, you can reuse the write protected NFC card. No need to buy new NFC tags for small household purposes if you already have written protected NFC like the metro card, hotel cards, price tags, gift cards, etc.
This is possible because this app doesn’t write anything on the tag itself but remember the tag id of the tags (which is unique like mac address of computers). Using this app you can do small tasks like toggling WiFi, Bluetooth, call a phone number, open an installed app, run Tasker task, etc.
8. NFC Developer
As the name suggests this application is made for the developers. You can make your own custom NFC task using the onlineNDEF editor from your computer and then write it to your NFC tags by scanning the QR code generated in the computer using this app.
If you are serious developed than I would recommend using the Eclipse plugin to write your custom program instead of online NDEF editor.
Automate is similar to the previous Trigger app, but even more powerful. If you have use apps such as Tasker, IFTTT, you’ll feel right at home with Automate app. It takes Android automation to the next level.
The app uses flowcharts, and blocks to create complex automation process, which can all be triggered by s simple tap on the NFC tag. It also integrates well with third-party apps and services like a smart bulb, smart locks, etc.
For example, with automated, you can program your NFC tags to turn off all light in your room and then stick that NFC next to your door.
So, these were some of the best Android apps out there, that will help you make more use of your NFC tags. Let me know, which is your favourite app in the comments.
Near Field Communication enables short range communication between compatible devices. You may have heard of NFC payments (tap to pay). If you’ve taken the self-guided tour of the STE(A)M Truck platform, you used NFC enabled tablets to learn about our various tools, materials, and vehicles. There’s a lot of potential for NFC use in the classroom. We’ve had a number of teachers and administrators ask for more guidance and resources, so we’ve put this page together. Here you’ll find a variety of resources, tips and tricks that can help you make the most out of NFC!
WHERE DO I START?
In short, you’ll need a transmitting device (NFC enabled phone), a receiving device (NFC tag), and some sort of content. Using one of many NFC apps, you’ll be able to program tags to perform a variety of tasks. Follow the link to find some helpful resources.
It sounds great, but I need ideas!
There are endless possibilities. Students could be awarded badges or have their attendance tracked, you could set up a daily routine of ‘do-now’ activities that students complete on their own phones, or go ahead and take a page out of our book and have self-guided stations with NFC enabled tablets. Check out some of the resources below for more ideas.
We’ve compiled a few resources as a starting point for setting up NFC technology in your classroom. Check them out below. Some of these articles specify particular products. Keep in mind that generally, NFC tags, sticks, fobs, etc. are all very similar no matter the brand. It might be a bit of a learning curve, but a technology like this has the potential to take much of the legwork out of some daily, routine tasks.
Important side note: While most Apple devices have NFC technology, so far they do not allow users to make use of it (they use it exclusively for Apple Pay. You’ll likely need to use Android devices).
What is NFC and How Does it work?
This article/video from Android Authority provides a high level overview of NFC and goes on to explain some of the science behind NFC. It also lays out some comparisons between NFC and Bluetooth/WiFi.
How to use programmable NFC tags with your android phone
Check out this HowToGeek article which lays out a high-level ‘how-to’ on setting up NFC tags with an Android phone.
Din Android-telefonens NFC-hardware er til mere end bare at overføre indhold og bruge mobile betalinger. Du kan købe billige, programmerbare NFC-tags og få din telefon til automatisk at udføre handlinger, når du rører dem.
Du kan f.eks. Placere NFC-tags på dit sengebord, i nærheden af din hoveddør, i din bil og på dit skrivebord på arbejdspladsen. Hvis du trykker på telefonen mod dem eller placerer den på dem, kan du automatisk vælge enhedsindstillinger, der giver mening i den pågældende placering.
Hvad du skal bruge
Du skal kun bruge to ting til dette. For det første skal du bruge en Android-telefon med NFC-hardware i den – og de fleste Android-telefoner tilbyder nu det. Nedre end Android-telefoner må muligvis ikke indeholde NFC-hardware for at holde omkostningerne lave. Du kan udføre en websøgning efter din model af telefon og "NFC" eller bare åbne sin indstillingsskærm. Du finder NFC-indstillingen under flere muligheder for trådløs og netværk. Naturligvis skal NFC-hardware være aktiveret for alt andet her til arbejde.
For det andet skal du have programmerbare NFC-tags. Søg efter NFC-tags på et websted som Amazon.com, og du finder dem tilgængelige til en forholdsvis lav pris. Nogle producenter gør deres egne, branded ones – men du behøver ikke tags lavet af din Android-telefon fabrikant.
Disse tags har ikke batterier i dem, men de har lidt hukommelse. Når du placerer din telefonens NFC-læser i nærheden af dem, giver NFC-læseren strøm til mærket, og du kan læse dataene fra taggen. Taggene er programmerbare, så du kan skrive de data, du vil have i taggen fra din telefon.
Programmering af tags
Du skal nu have en app, der kan programmere tags. Android indeholder ikke en, men du kan søge efter "nfc-tags" på Google Play for at finde en masse apps, der kan håndtere dette for dig – herunder gratis. For eksempel vil appen NFC Tools lade dig skrive data til et tag og læse dataene allerede på tags.
Installer en sådan app, åbn den, og vælg de data, du gerne vil skrive til et tag. Du kan muligvis låse et mærke, så det kan ikke omprogrammeres, hvilket kan være godt, hvis du forlader det pågældende tag i et offentligt område. Det betyder dog, at du aldrig vil kunne ændre data på taggen i fremtiden, så brug ikke denne indstilling, medmindre du har en god grund til det.
Derefter kan du trykke på taggen mod NFC-læseren på bagsiden af din telefon, og den vil kopiere dataene til tagens hukommelse. Placer tagget på et passende sted for den handling, du valgte.
Brug af tags
Dernæst skal du have en app, der svarer til tagsne. Hvis du for eksempel brugte NFC Tools til at skrive data til dine tags, kan du installere appen NFC Opgaver. Når din telefon læser en NFC-tag, har du skrevet instruktioner til, læser NFC Tools-appen instruktionerne fra det pågældende NFC-tag og udfører dem.
Du kan så placere tagsne et sted bekvemt. Placer dem på et bord, og læg derefter telefonen på dem, når du vil udføre handlingen. Fastgør dem til en væg nær en dør, hvis du vil trykke på din telefon mod et tag, når du forlader eller indtaster et område. Det er op til dig, hvad du vil bruge disse tags til. Anvendelserne er næsten uendelige.
For eksempel, hvis du regelmæssigt skal indstille en time lang timer, når du laver dit vasketøj, kan du programmere en NFC-tag for at starte en time-lang timer og placere den ved siden af din vaskemaskine. Indstil din telefon ned på det pågældende tag eller tryk på det, og det vil starte tøjvaskeren. Hvis du parrer din telefon regelmæssigt med et Bluetooth-tastatur, kan du sætte en NFC-tag på bagsiden af tastaturet og trykke på din telefon mod det for automatisk at gå gennem Bluetooth-parringsprocessen.
Du kan også oprette et tag med dine Wi-Fi-oplysninger, og gæster kan bare trykke deres telefoner mod NFC-taggen for at oprette forbindelse til dit Wi-Fi-netværk uden at lokalisere det og indtaste en adgangskode. De ville have brug for en passende app installeret på deres telefon for at gøre dette dog.
Apples iPhone 6 har NFC-hardware, men apps kan ikke bruge det – det er i øjeblikket kun for Apple Pay. Fremtidige softwareopdateringer kan tillade dig at gøre mere med det, men du kan ikke lige nu. Windows Phone har også en vis støtte til dette, så iPhone-brugere er de eneste, der er udeladt lige nu.
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You’ve probably heard of NFC tags before, and even though this technology has been available for quite a while, it’s become much more prevalent in recent years. NFC technology lets you use your iPhone in many different ways, and it’s actually a fantastic new way to trigger various actions and shortcuts without unlocking your iPhone or other smartphones.
The best part is that you can do many things with an NFC tag. Basically, the sky is the limit – and if you can program it, you can use an NFC tag to automate it.
You can use NFC tags to make your home smarter, to help promote your business, or just for fun.
Using NFC tags isn’t complicated or expensive, and you’ll only need your iPhone and a little bit of basic knowledge.
Here’s everything you need to know about the NFC tags!
What’s NFC Technology?
Near field communication, better known as NFC, is a secure connection between two devices that allows communication between them as long as they are near each other. Hence “near” in the name.
Basically, this communication lets both devices move data or information between one another. You’ve likely used NFC technology before by paying with Apple Pay or Google Pay.
Many other devices, like headphones, support NFC technology which allows for use in a bunch of different ways, like easy Bluetooth pairing for example.
Here we are focusing on small NFC tags, which are stickers, or cards, or keychains with a chip inside that lets them communicate with your device. You can program an NFC tag to do many custom actions for you, your family, or anyone else who taps the tag with their smartphone.
Or, you can also use the NFC tag to trigger a custom iPhone shortcut that will only work for you, like setting an alarm clock or turning off the lights. But first, you’ll need to have the right equipment.
What Do You Need to Set Up an NFC Tag?
Setting up NFC tags with your iPhone is pretty straightforward, but you need to have the right tools to do so.
First, you’ll need to get NFC tags. These are pretty easy to come by, but make sure you’re buying them from a trusted place. If you buy locked tags, you won’t be able to program or change them. Fortunately, there are many trusted sites like Amazon where you can get them.
They’re also pretty cheap; you can get up to 50 NFC tags for around $14, so you’ll have more than enough to cover all of your needs.
- Additionally, you’ll need an iPhone that supports Near Field Communication (NFC). Fortunately, every recent iPhone supports this technology.
- You’ll need to have an iPhone 7 or newer to use NFC tags. The 2020 iPhone SE also counts.
- Also, make sure that your iPhone has at least iOS 13 installed. That shouldn’t be a problem, but it’s still worth mentioning.
Finally, if you want to program your tags from your iPhone, you’ll also need an app. There are many NFC apps in the App Store, but we recommend that you start with NFC TagWriter by NXP or NFC Tools.
Both work the same way, so you shouldn’t have a problem with either app.
You’ll also need Apple’s Shortcuts app. It’s installed by default on your iPhone, but you might want to download it again if you deleted it.
After you have all of this stuff ready, it’s time to customize your tags.
How to Trigger an iOS Shortcut with Your NFC Tag
The easiest way to use an NFC tag is with an action from your Shortcuts app. Shortcuts are already pretty fast to use, but this way, you can turn off your lights or even send a custom message just by tapping your iPhone on an NFC tag.
Here’s how to add a shortcut to a specific NFC tag:
- On your iPhone, open the Shortcuts app.
- Tap on the Automation tab at the bottom of your screen.
- Tap on Create Personal Automation.
- Scroll down and select NFC.
- Tap on Scan.
- Put your iPhone near the NFC tag.
- Enter a name for your tag.
- Tap on Add Action.
- Select the action you want your iPhone to do when you tap the tag. You can select actions you already created or create new ones. Don’t worry about not adding the shortcut you want; you can always change it later.
- Once you selected your action, tap on Next on the top right corner.
- If you want your action to run automatically, make sure to toggle Ask Before Running OFF.
- Tap Done.
And that’s it. Now you can test your tag by placing your iPhone near the tag. If you want, you can change the action in the Shortcuts app.
Something to keep in mind is that you’ll be the only one whose iPhone will complete the action when near this tag. If you want a different iPhone or another device to do the same action, you’ll need to repeat the same steps on that device.
If you want your tag to be programmed for anyone to use, you’ll need to follow the next steps.
How to Program NFC Tags Anyone Can Use
If you want your tag to work automatically without making people create a new shortcut, you’ll need to program or write the custom action to your NFC tag. Don’t worry though, it’s easier than it sounds, and you’ll only need to use the apps we previously mentioned.
For the purpose of this tutorial, we’ll show you how to use program an NFC tag by using the NFC Tools app, but you can also use NFC TagWriter, and the steps will be similar. Here’s what you need to do.
- On your iPhone, open NFC Tools.
- Tap Write.
- Tap Add a record.
- You’ll see a list with a bunch of options available. You can choose to open a URL, send a text or open a file. For this example, choose URL/URI. And don’t worry, you can change it later.
- Enter the URL you want to open. You can try, for example, https://weather.com.
- Tap Ok.
- You’ll be back on a previous screen, and you should see your new action. Now tap on Write.
- Approach your NFC tag and you’re done!
You can get out of the app and give your NFC tag a test. Now, anyone can use your tag without any extra steps. If you want to change your NFC tag, go back to the app and tap Other.
NFC is one of those odd features that everybody wants in their phone, but few people are sure how they’ll use it yet. Payments systems are slow to catch on and Beam functionality requires a friend with an NFC phone and a need to share data that isn’t easier to share via the internet. Samsung, who is quick to note it has the largest NFC-enabled userbase, aims to change that with TecTiles: NFC tags that you can program to perform tasks when you place your phone near them.
The concept sounds why-didn’t-anyone-do-this-soon er awesome. For $15, you can get a pack of five TecTiles. You can then program them to perform a variety of actions when your phone is placed on them. So, as a sample application, you could have one tile on your desk at work that is programmed to send your spouse a message saying, “Leaving the office now. Be home soon!” Tap your phone to the tile when you leave and boom. Spousal duties fulfilled!
The applications seem pretty robust. Tags are capable of changing device settings such as Bluetooth, WiFi and ringer volume. Conceivably, a user could program a “low battery mode” tag: one tap and it disables WiFi, Bluetooth, and any other unnecessary communication signals.
The tags can also be programmed with information. A business could use a tag to let patrons automatically open up their website. Social network integration means a tag could be programmed to follow a Twitter account when tapped. The tags even have support for Foursquare and Facebook check-ins. Tags can also be programmed with personal contact info. One tap and you can add your info to a person’s address book.
While anything NFC will be limited in utility until NFC devices become more ubiquitous, it’s a great thing that Samsung is getting ahead of the game on this one. Galaxy S II/III devices are certainly among the most popular NFC-enabled devices, to the tune of millions of users. The sooner those users get used to the idea of not just reading data with NFC, but writing it, the better. And the more awesome the future will look.
Only one thing could make this more awesome: if Samsung made this available to any and all NFC-enabled phones. And, wouldn’t you know it, they do! According to the press release below, TecTiles “are easy to program with any NFC-enabled smartphone,” which means that any NFC phone can join in the fun. The tags can also be reprogrammed as often as you’d like. So feel free to go nuts!
Samsung says the TecTiles are available online now, and its site offers a Buy Now link, though it’s currently not working. Hopefully, this will be fixed soon. You can also download the TecTiles app from the widget below. It will require an NFC-enabled phone to work.
The connection NFC it can be very useful due to its wireless and immediate nature. We tell you how you can read NFC tags and edit your own.
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NFC: effective technology that is still making its way
Technology NFC it is not as popular as it could be. This connection stands out for being immediate and for requiring only the contact of the back of your mobile with another smartphone or NFC chip. Thanks to this, it has become the chosen option for mobile phone payments, since it also eliminates headaches and allows instant payments without making the consumer think excessively.
Even so, it is still not very widespread. It is more or less common to find NFC in top-of-the-range mobiles, but at the same time it is one of those that disappears more quickly if the manufacturer decides that it has to eliminate something. After all, there are other more important connections that are given priority, so the NFC connection has a long way to go yet.
However, can be very useful for day to day. There are people who use NFC tags for small tasks. For example, they put one in the car that allows you to instantly activate the bluetooth connection for the hands-free; or one on the desk to cut all connections and be able to sleep soundly at night. The uses can be very ingenious and, if you are willing to invest in NFC tags – and you have a compatible mobile – it is possible to make your day to day easier. However, for this you need to have a tool with which to edit NFC tags, and that is what we bring you today.
How to read and edit NFC tags with your Android mobile
NFCTools is an app that is available for free in the Play Store. It also has a Pro Edition of payment that adds more functions. However, the basic version will suffice for many users, since one of its main advantages is that it is accessible to everyone. The best geek They will be able to tinker more, while those who want to configure something simple will also be able to.
The two most important tabs in the app are Reading and Writing. The tab Learn It will allow you to see all the data regarding the scanned label, from its manufacturer to its current use. The eyelash Write will allow you to create the actions you want. Thus, the development team suggests things like a simple text, a URL, contact information or a Wi-Fi connection. In the tab Others more settings can be accessed.
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Full path to article: Android Help » Android apps and applications » How to read and write NFC tags with your Android mobile
Have you ever wanted to be able to scan NFC tags when your phone screen is off? That’s not a possibility as there are security risks in doing so – imagine if someone could trigger a mobile payment from your smartphone while the screen is off? There are other security risks as well, but the bottom line is that it’s not possible to activate and read NFC tags while your smartphone screen is off anyway. That is, without root access. NFCScreenOff by XDA Member lapwat is a Magisk Module that you can enable on your phone to always read NFC tags even when your screen is locked.
While this may be useful for those who use NFC tags in their home for automation, you can’t use it for in-store contactless payments as it breaks SafetyNet. It is not a systemless modification, as it directly patches and modifies the system NfcNci.apk in order to always return true when it polls whether the screen is unlocked or not. It should work on most Android 9 and Android 10 devices, though there is a chance that it may not work on specific smartphones. The developer hopes that in the future, the mod can be done systemless to allow for mobile payments.
If you want to install the NFCScreenOff Magisk module, you can check out both the XDA thread and the GitHub repository below. You can simply flash the Magisk module as you would any other!
XDA » Forum Links » NFCScreenOff mod enables scanning NFC tags when your Android phone is locked
Din Android-telefonens NFC-maskinvara är för mer än bara att överföra innehåll och använda mobila betalningar. Du kan köpa billiga, programmerbara NFC-taggar och få telefonen att automatiskt utföra åtgärder när du rör dem.
Till exempel kan du placera NFC-taggar på ditt sängbord, nära din ytterdörr, i din bil och på ditt skrivbord på jobbet. Om du slår på telefonen mot dem eller lägger ner den på dem kan du automatiskt välja enhetsinställningar som är klara på den platsen.
Vad du behöver
Du behöver bara två saker för detta. Först behöver du en Android-telefon med NFC-hårdvara i den – och de flesta Android-telefoner kommer nu att erbjuda det. Nedre änden Android-telefoner får inte inkludera NFC-hårdvara för att hålla kostnaderna låga. Du kan utföra en webbsökning för din modell av telefon och "NFC" eller bara öppna skärmen Inställningar. Du hittar NFC-alternativet under fler alternativ för trådlös och nätverk. Självklart måste NFC-hårdvaran vara aktiverad för allt annat här för att fungera.
För det andra behöver du programmerbara NFC-taggar. Sök efter NFC-taggar på en webbplats som Amazon.com och du hittar dem tillgängliga till ett relativt lågt pris. Vissa tillverkare gör egna, märkesvaror – men du behöver inte taggar som tillverkas av din Android-telefon.
Dessa taggar har inte batterier i dem, men de har lite minne. När du placerar din NFC-läsare i närheten av dem, ger NFC-läsaren ström till taggen och kan läsa data från taggen. Taggarna är programmerbara, så du kan skriva vilken data du vill ha i taggen från din telefon.
Du behöver nu en app som kan programmera taggarna. Android innehåller inte en, men du kan söka efter "nfc-taggar" på Google Play för att hitta många appar som kan hantera detta för dig – inklusive gratis. Till exempel låter NFC Tools-appen skriva data till en tagg och läsa data som redan finns på taggar.
Installera en sådan app, öppna den och välj vilken data du vill skriva till en tagg. Det kan hända att du kan låsa en tagg så att den inte kan omprogrammeras, vilket kan vara bra om du lämnar taggen i ett offentligt område. Det betyder dock att du aldrig kommer att kunna ändra data på taggen i framtiden, så använd inte det här alternativet om du inte har en bra anledning till det.
Därefter kan du trycka på taggen mot NFC-läsaren på baksidan av din telefon och det kommer att kopiera den data till taggens minne. Placera taggen på ett lämpligt ställe för den åtgärd du valde.
Därefter behöver du en app som svarar på taggarna. Om du till exempel använde NFC Tools för att skriva data till dina taggar kan du installera appen NFC Tasks. När din telefon läser en NFC-tagg du har skrivit instruktioner till läser NFC Tools-appen instruktionerna från den NFC-taggen och utför dem.
Du kan då bara placera taggarna någonstans bekvämt. Placera dem på ett bord och placera sedan telefonen på dem när du vill utföra åtgärden. Fäst dem på en vägg nära en dörr om du vill knacka på telefonen mot en tagg när du lämnar eller anger ett område. Det är upp till dig vad du vill använda dessa taggar för. Användningarna är praktiskt taget oändliga.
Om du till exempel regelbundet behöver ställa in en timmars timer när du tvättar, kan du programmera en NFC-tagg för att starta en timme lång timer och placera den bredvid tvättmaskinen. Ställ in din telefon på den taggen eller tryck på den och det börjar tvätten. Om du parar regelbundet din telefon med ett Bluetooth-tangentbord kan du anbringa en NFC-tagg på baksidan av tangentbordet och knacka på telefonen mot det för att automatiskt gå igenom Bluetooth-parningsprocessen.
Eller du kan ställa in en tagg med Wi-Fi-detaljerna och gästerna kan bara trycka på sina telefoner mot NFC-taggen för att ansluta till ditt Wi-Fi-nätverk utan att hitta det och skriva in ett lösenord. De skulle behöva en lämplig app installerad på deras telefon för att göra det dock.
Apples iPhone 6 har NFC-hårdvara, men appar kan inte använda den – det är just för Apple Pay. Framtida programuppdateringar kan låta dig göra mer med det, men du kan inte just nu. Windows Phone har också något stöd för det här, så iPhone-användare är de enda som lämnas ut just nu.
“Android” telefono NFC aparatūra yra ne tik turinio perkėlimas ir naudojimasis mobiliaisiais mokėjimais. Galite nusipirkti pigių, programuojamų NFC žymelių ir priversti telefoną automatiškai atlikti veiksmus, kai juos paliečiate.
Pvz., NFC žymes galite įdėti į savo naktinę stalą šalia jūsų durų, savo automobilio ir stalo darbas Palietę savo telefoną prieš juos arba palikdami juos, jie automatiškai galės pasirinkti įrenginio nustatymus, kurie yra tinkami toje vietoje.
SUSIJĘS: Kas yra “NFC” ir ką aš galiu jį naudoti ?
Jums reikės tik dviejų dalykų. Pirma, jums reikės “Android” telefono su NFC aparatine įranga, ir tai dabar pasiūlys dauguma “Android” telefonų. Žemutinės klasės “Android” telefonuose gali nebūti NFC įrangos, kad išlaidos būtų mažos. Galite atlikti savo telefono modelio ir “NFC” žiniatinklio paiešką arba tiesiog atidarykite savo nustatymų ekraną. NFC parinktį rasite daugiau “Wireless & network” parinkčių. Akivaizdu, kad NFC aparatūra turi būti įjungta, jei norite dirbti viską, kas čia.
Antra, jums reikės programuojamų NFC žymių. Ieškokite NFC žymų svetainėje, pvz., “Amazon.com”, ir galėsite juos rasti už gana mažą kainą. Kai kurie gamintojai gamina savo, firminius, bet jums nereikia “Android” telefono gamintojo sukurtų žymų.
Šios žymos neturi jose baterijų, tačiau jose yra šiek tiek atminties. Kai šalia jų įdėkite savo telefono NFC skaitytuvą, NFC skaitytuvas pateikia žyma ir gali skaityti duomenis iš žyma. Žymos yra programuojamos, todėl telefone galite įrašyti visus norimus duomenis į žymą.
SUSIJĘS: Kaip naudoti “Android Beam” bevieliu būdu perkelti turinį tarp įrenginių
Dabar reikės programos, galinčios programuoti žymas. Android nenumato vieno, tačiau galite ieškoti “nfc žymų” “Google Play”, kad galėtumėte rasti daugybę programų, kurios galėtų jums tai įveikti, įskaitant nemokamas. Pavyzdžiui, “NFC Tools” programa leis jums rašyti duomenis žyme ir skaityti jau jau esančius žymes.
Įdiekite tokią programą, atidarykite ją ir pasirinkite duomenis, kuriuos norite parašyti žyme. Galite užrakinti žymą, kad ją negalėtų pakeisti, o tai gali būti naudinga, jei paliksite tą žymą viešoje vietoje. Tačiau tai reiškia, kad jūs niekada negalėsite pakeisti žymos duomenų ateityje, todėl nenaudokite šios parinkties, jei neturite tinkamos priežasties.
Vėliau galėsite paliesti žymą prieš NFC skaitytuvą telefono galinėje dalyje, ir tie duomenys bus nukopijuoti į žymos atmintį. Įdėkite žymą patogioje pasirinkto veiksmo vietoje.
Toliau reikės programos, kuri reaguos į žymas. Pvz., Jei naudodami NFC įrankius rašote duomenis į savo žymas, galite įdiegti “NFC Tasks” programą. Kai jūsų telefonas skaito NFC žymą, kuria rašėte nurodymus, “NFC Tools” programa skaitys šios NFC žymos nurodymus ir juos atliks.
Tada galite lengvai įdėti žymeles kur nors patogiai. Padėkite juos ant stalo ir įdėkite savo telefoną, kai norite atlikti veiksmą. Pritvirtinkite juos prie sienos šalia durų, jei norite paliesti telefoną prie žyma, kai paliksite arba pateksite į zoną. Tai priklauso nuo to, ką norite naudoti šioms žymėms. Naudojimas yra praktiškai begalinis.
Pvz., Jei reguliariai nustatydami valandų skaičių laikrodį, kai skalbiate, galite užprogramuoti NFC žymą, kad pradėtumėte valandų laikmačio nustatymą ir padėkite jį šalia skalbimo mašinos. . Nustatykite savo telefoną šia žyma arba palieskite jį, ir jis pradės skalbimo žoliapjovę. Jei reguliariai poruosite savo telefoną naudodami “Bluetooth” klaviatūrą, galėtumėte pritvirtinti NFC žymą klaviatūros pusėje ir paliesti jį telefonu, kad automatiškai pereitumėte prie “Bluetooth” poravimo proceso.
Arba galite nustatyti žymą su jūsų “Wi-Fi” duomenys, o svečiai gali tiesiog paliesti savo telefonus su “NFC” žyma, norėdami prisijungti prie “Wi-Fi” tinklo, nepasirinkę jo ir neįvedę prieigos kodo. Tačiau, norėdami tai padaryti, jiems reikės atitinkamos programos, įdiegtos savo telefone.
“Apple” “iPhone 6” turi “NFC” aparatinę įrangą, tačiau “Apps” negali ją naudoti – šiuo metu tai tik “Apple Pay”. Būsimieji programinės įrangos naujiniai gali leisti jums tai padaryti dar daugiau, bet dabar negalėsite. “Windows Phone” taip pat turi tam tikrą paramą, taigi “iPhone” vartotojai yra vieninteliai, kurie dabar liko neteisingi.
Image Credit: Beau Giles dėl Flickr
Jūs jau matėte tai vėl ir vėl. FBI naudoja pažangias technologijas, kad “sustiprintų” miglotą vaizdą ir rastų piktadarį į blogiausią vaizdo įrašą. Na, How-To Geek skamba jų blefas. Skaitykite toliau, kad pamatytumėte, kodėl. Tai vienas iš labiausiai paplitusių televizijos ir filmų tropų, tačiau ar yra kokia nors galimybė, kad vyriausybinė agentūra iš tikrųjų galėtų turėti technologiją, kuri padėtų rasti veidus, kuriuose yra tik neryškus pikseliai?
“Android 6.0” didelė atpažinimo funkcija yra “Google” dabar bakstelėkite. Dalyje “Google” dabar “Dabar bakstelėjimas” “Google” gali nuskaityti ekraną, kai tik jį atidarote, automatiškai atspindėję tai, ko norite ieškoti ir suteikti daugiau informacijos. Be naudotojo valdomų programų leidimų – ką “Apple” pasiūlė iš su “iPhone” – tai yra svarbiausia ir įdomiausia nauja “6.
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I did enough research on reading RFID tags using Android phones(smart phones).
My understanding of this is that for NFC-enabled smart phones (Nexus S) it is possible to read RFID tags, but there are restrictions.
For non-NFC-enabled Androids we need a RFID reader to which we can communicate from Android using Bluetooth.
- What are the SDK which we use for reading RFID tag from Android Phone(NFC enabled)?
- If I have to read using Non NFC enabled phone, is there any standard reader available who provides SDK for development purpose?
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NFC enabled phones can ONLY read NFC and passive high frequency RFID (HF-RFID). These must be read at an extremely close range, typically a few centimeters. For longer range or any other type of RFID/active RFID, you must use an external reader for handling them with mobile devices.
You can get some decent readers from a lot of manufacturers by simply searching on google. There are a lot of plug in ones for all device types.
I deal a lot with HID readers capable of close proximity scans of HID enabled ID cards as well as NFC from smart phones and smart cards. I use SerialIO badge readers that I load a decryption profile onto that allows our secure company cards to be read and utilized by an application I built. They are great for large scale reliable bluetooth scanning. Because they are bluetooth, they work for PC/Android/iOS/Linux. The only problem is, HID readers are very expensive and are meant for enterprise use. Ours cost about $400 each, but again, they read HID, SmartCards, NFC, and RFID.
If this is a personal project, I suggest just using the phone and purchasing some HF-RFID tags. The tag manufacturer should have an SDK for you to use to connect to and manage the tags. You can also just use androids NFC docs to get started https://developer.android.com/guide/topics/connectivity/nfc/. Most android phones from the last 8 years have NFC, only iPhone 6 and newer apple phones have NFC, but only iOS 11 and newer will work for what you want to do.
First is understanding that RFID is very generic term. NFC is subset of RFID technology. NFC is used for prox card, credit cards, tap and go payment system. Your phones can read and emulate NFC (Apple pay, Google pay, etc.), if they support NFC. NFC is very short distance and low power – which is why you see tap and go type usage.
The more common RFID are the tags you see here and there. They come in a wide ranges of styles, uses and frequency.
HF – high frequency tags are what they use for “chipping” animals – cattle, dogs, cats. Read range is about 12 inches and requires an external antenna that is powered the bigger the antenna the more power it needs and the further it can read.
UFH tags look similar to HF tags but have a read range of several feet.
Also HF tags come single read and multi read. UFH is exclusviely multi read.
Mutiread means when a reader is active, you can litterally read about 1700 tags in under 10 seconds.
But this is a function of the size of the antenna and how much power you can push through the reader.
As to the direct question about Android and RFID – the best way to go is to get an external handheld reader that connects to your mobile device via Bluetooth. Bluetooth libraries exist for all mobile devices – Android, Apple, Windows. From there its just a matter of the manufacturer documentation about how to open a socket to the reader and how to decode the serial information.
The TSL line of readers is very popular because you don’t have to deal with reading bytes and all that low level serial jazz that other manufactures do. They have a nice set of commands that are easy to use to control the reader.
Other manufactures are basic in that you open a serial socket and then read the output like you would see in terminal app like PuTTY.
⚠️Important Update: Nearly 80% of all keycards used within commercial facilities may be prone to hacking due to protocol vulnerabilities. Kisi’s 128bit AES encrypted passes and tags are designed to protect your business from such threats: learn more here.
How We Copied Key Fobs and Found Vulnerabilities in Keycards:
In this post you’ll learn:
- How many RFID cards exist
- The best ways to copy your office 125khz access cards with step-by-step instructions in LESS than 1 minute (including the tools you need)
- Another step-by-step guide on how the more advanced 13.56MHz cards can be copied (and, of course, which equipment you need)
Basically that means you’ll learn how to clone cards (NFC or RFID cloner) at your office desk!
The Impact of RFID Cards and RFID Key Fobs
IDTechEx found that in 2015, the total RFID market was worth $10.1 billion. The parent directory for NFC was estimated a $10.1 billion — from $9.5 billion in 2014, and $8.8 billion in 2013.
This market sizing includes all the tags, readers and software designed for RFID cards and RFID key fobs, including all form factors. IDTechEx states that the market is estimated to rise to $13.2 billion by 2020. The security industry has experienced a major overhaul with advances in technology. For example, door security has evolved from simple pad locks and keys to RFID-enabled cards and fobs that can be swiped and triggered, as well as using electric locks to open doors. While this technology is amazing, it requires constant evolution and adaptation to defend against malicious users.
Any new technology, from the moment it is introduced to the general public, is vulnerable to manipulation and hacking by malicious users. A good example of this is RFID tags in 2013. At the time, RFID technology had spread like wildfire across many sectors — tech companies, hospitals, and more were using 125khz cards to access door secured with electric locks. Most were using the EM4100 protocol card (a type of 125khz card) or a CMOS IC-based card, which had the information about the tag or fob stored openly. Since these ICs had no encryption or authentication, they would broadcast their information as soon as a reader was nearby. This posed a huge security risk to companies dealing with sensitive information and products. Essentially, anyone with the right equipment could steal or replicate these cards and fobs, whether they were authorized or not.
You have a spare NFC tag laying around and you aren’t sure how to use it? Here’s an idea – power up your Windows PC using the tag and a NFC-enabled Android device. You’ll only need 10-15 minutes, three apps on your device, and a simple configuration in your PC’s wireless adapter settings.
First, open up your Windows Network and Sharing Center. Click Change adapter settings. Right click your active internet connection and select Properties. Click the Configure button to the right. Go to the Advanced tab, look for the option “Wake on Magic Packet”, and set its Value to Enabled.
Next, you’ll need to get your hands on your computer’s IP and MAC addresses. No, you won’t be hacking your own PC or anything. You’ll just have to run a few simple commands. Hold down the Windows key and press the R key on your keyboard to launch the Run dialog box. In it, type “ipconfig /all” without the quotes. You’ll get a command prompt window with a bunch of network data. If the window disappears too quickly, press the Windows + R keys again, type “cmd”, hit Enter, then type “ipconfig /all” in the command prompt. What you need to write down are the Physical Address, IPv4 Address, and Subnet Mask values. Keep them near, you’ll need them later. Also, your computer has to be on a Wi-Fi connection.
Now, install the following apps on your Android device:
Tasker – download from Google Play. This will be used to automate the processes. The app usually costs $2.99, but you can get a .apk install of a 7-day trial version from here. Install it on your device like any other apk.
Trigger – download from Google Play. This app is used for reading and writing to your NFC tag. It’s a free download.
WoL Wake On Lan Wan – download from Google Play. This app sends the command that powers your PC on. It’s a free download.
All set? Let’s move! Open WoL on your smartphone, and tap Add New button. Type “Home” in the Name field, then type your MAC and IP addresses in the designated fields. Tick the box next to “Send as Broadcast”, and enter your Subnet Mask address. You’re done! Tap Save and move to Tasker.
Wheee-whew! Not that you’ve gone through all this, you should be able to power on your PC by placing your Android device on the designated NFC Tag, with the display switched on. Find a clever spot for it and enjoy the little piece of the future. If you have any problems, first, check out whether “Wake On Lan” is enabled in your PC’s BIOS. Hopefully, this will solve it.
Today, Samsung have released the next step: NFC-enabled tags called TecTiles. When you bring your phone next to a tag, it’ll automatically have a useful effect: it might automatically send a text, check into Foursquare, start a navigation app or put your phone on silent. The tiles are programmed through the TecTile app, and then stuck in areas where you tend to use your phone.
The idea is that instead of having to perform the same set of tasks over and over again, you just set up a routine, assign it to a TecTile and then all you have to do is touch it to set off the exact same response every time.
For example, you might stick a TecTile in your car phone holder – when you put your phone in the holder to drive home, you can automatically turn on Bluetooth and GPS, turn off Wi-Fi and start a navigation app. When you arrive at your house, you can set your phone to loud mode and turn on Wi-Fi again. You’ll never have to spend time fiddling with your settings again.
Each pack includes five different TecTiles, so you’ll have more than enough to place them everywhere they’re needed. With these programmable NFC tags, you’re only limited by your imagination – a future of easy automation awaits!
For more information on the Samsung TecTiles, please visit the product page linked below. You also might be interested in Sony’s variant of NFC tags, called Smart Tags, which are in stock now.
Thanks for reading, and if you have any questions about this innovative new product then feel free to ask us via the normal social media channels or leave a comment below. Have a good one!
Samsung is launching TecTiles, which are programmable NFC tags that can be programmed (and re-programmed) by a phone like the Galaxy S3. There are many ways to use them, but one cool example that Samsung is going to push is to program TecTiles to trigger actions on a Galaxy S3 phone. For example, a tag placed on your bedside table could trigger the phone’s silent mode, shut down 3G/4G and even WIFI to save on battery life. Of course, the phone is smart enough to let select phone calls go through.
A tag placed in a vehicle could also start Bluetooth so that communications with a headset or other hands-free devices can happen. Tags can launch applications or complex system scripts/actions such as sending SMS, update social network statuses, open a map location, a web page or download content. And once developers get their hands on those, you can bet that such tags will appear at local merchants and other places. The possibilities are just endless.
If you are wondering, Tag-triggered actions may require user permission depending on the app, so don’t worry, stuff that you don’t want to happen probably won’t. Samsung is going to retail these TecTiles for 14.99 (pack of 5). For sure, we are going to take a close look at these when we review the Galaxy S3. What do you think? What would you like to do with these?