NFCs, tikitags; the Future is looking very Spimey

Posted by on September 9th, 2008 in communications, NFC, QRC, RFID, spime, ubiquitous computing

As the news out of Japan hinted, they’re already moving beyond the world of QRCodes. Just as the rest of us are starting to explore it with what we like to think of as ‘futurephones’ (or is it just me?).

And I was left with this question:

So what is different about this Near Field Communication? Is there some thin electronics being printed into the poster? More investigation is clearly required.

The obvious first stop is the wikipedia entry:

NFC phone readerNFC is a short-range high frequency wireless communication technology which enables the exchange of data between devices over about a 10 centimetre (around 4 inches) distance. The technology is a simple extension of the ISO 14443 proximity-card standard (contactless card, RFID) that combines the interface of a smartcard and a reader into a single device.

So it’s RFIDs being integrated into our phones; yeah, I think we all saw that coming.

Of course now I’m wondering when we’ll see this outside of Japan. And then Bruce Sterling tweeted: “Wondering how spimey “tikitag” really is. They’re looking mighty spimed. http://www.tikitag.com/“.

And what does tikitag use? NFC:

tikitag uses high frequency RFID (Radio Frequent IDentification) operating at 13.56MHz. tikitag uses passive RFID tags and active readers. tikitag is also compatible with Near Field Communication, a standard based on HF RFID and being implemented in more and more mobile phones.

But enough with the text quotes, what does it look like? Here’s an example:
YouTube Preview Image

A simple, but powerful demo. For one, it’s far less obtrusive than having to scan the big graphic that a QRCode is. These can placed inside and behind things, so long as the reader can hit them.

And what sort of applications do they see for it?

tikitag applications

So just about everything in the modern consumer world then.

But we all just got QRCodes readers on our iPhones, N-Series Nokias, etc. They can’t be upgrading the tech already, can then? Of course they are:

What mobile phones are NFC enabled?

Today you can buy the Nokia 6131 NFC and in the near future as well the Nokia 6212 Classic. Other: BenQ T80, Motorola L7 (SLVR) NFC, Samsung SGH-D500E NFC, Samsung SGH-X700n (brick) NFC, Sagem-Orga my700X NFC, Nokia 3220 + NFC Shell and some Kyocera models.

So it’s just in new phones by most of the major makers then.

Alright kids, forget QRCodes then, get ready for NFC. I can’t wait to see what comes next; bring on the internet of things!

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