The Convergence of the Physical and Digital: NFC moves beyond payments to enable new consumer experiences

Posted by Dr. Davor Sutija, CEO - Thinfilm on Jun 6, 2017 7:08:04 PM
Dr. Davor Sutija, CEO - Thinfilm
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Background: On Monday, during its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC17), Apple disclosed that iOS 11 will support the reading of NFC tags. To this point, Apple’s NFC implementation has been limited to Apple Pay, supporting in-store contactless payments.  The result is that, beginning this Fall, the iPhone 7 and upcoming iPhone models will be able to read NFC tags.

Thinfilm congratulates Apple on adding NFC tag support to its mobile devices and believes this is a great step forward for consumers.  The physical and digital worlds have begun to converge in recent years, and Apple’s disclosure Monday that they will include support for NFC tags in iOS 11 paves the way for new business models and accelerated adoption.  This includes both B2B and B2C applications that benefit from instant and uniquely identifiable interactivity between smartphones and NFC enabled products and packaging.

While full implementation details have not been announced, it is now likely that Apple’s use of NFC will include support for new use cases, benefiting consumers.  No longer bounded by the retail store, brands will now directly talk to their customers through the entire consumer journey, from product selection through first use and subsequent reordering.  Brand activation, product authentication, direct ordering and delivery, and convenient localized product information and user guides, can all be launched with a simple tap, taking the consumer directly to the right digital experience in a fraction of a second. Importantly, as use of NFC is user initiated by a simple tap of a smartphone, the consumer remains in control and secure. 

Broad cross-platform support for NFC will accelerate the convergence between physical items and their digital identities, enabling new consumer and enterprise benefits and allowing brands to seamlessly educate and market to consumers in real-time. 

Thinfilm looks forward to working with Apple, as our leadership in Printed Electronics can help extend such applications broadly, enabling the Internet of Everything by bringing a little intelligence to ordinary objects.

To read more about the Apple news, check out the following article from NFC World: “Apple adds support for NFC tags to iPhone 7 and Apple Watch  

 

 

Topics: NFC

About Thinfilm Thoughts

Thinfilm Thoughts is the blog for Thinfilm Electronics ASA (“Thinfilm”). The postings published here present our opinions and thought leadership views regarding printed electronics technology and products, the printed electronics industry, and the role that printed electronics will play in powering the Internet of Everything.