How-To Geek

Near Field Communication (NFC)

Near Field Communication (NFC) is a set of standards for close-proximity communication between smartphones and similar mobile electronics. NFC is built upon existing Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) standards but expands functionality by enabling two-way communication and encryption.

Current applications of NFC technology include contactless payments systems such as Google Wallet, wherein customers can simply pass their NFC-enabled smartphone over a payment terminal to checkout. Similar contactless sytems exist in several countries for mass transit use in place of a physical ticket or fare card. NFC systems are favored over RFID systems in secure applications, such as contactless payment, because NFC systems have a shorter range and can be encrypted. In addition to more serious uses like financial exchanges, NFC technology is also useful for social networking and contact data exchange.

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