NFC Contactless Unlocked in IOS 11!

So, I work in the field of payment technology. More specifically, plastic card technology. And for those of us in the know, the most exciting tech is NFC.
You’ve probably seen NFC before. It’s the technology that allows you to tap your device against another to transfer data. NFC is the most feature rich, and versatile technology available in a plastic card. It allows you to embed data on the card, that’s read by mobile phones, tablets, and more. Some examples of stuff you can do:
  • Put a VCard on them, so that you can load your contact info onto someone else’s phone by tapping it on the phone.
  • Open your Website, Twitter, or Facebook page with a tap on a device.
  • Set a destination in a map app like Google Maps with the tap of a card.
  • It’s how your Google Pay and Apple Pay apps send data to payment devices wirelessly.
The biggest speed-bump to unleashing NFC on the world….. Apple. Apple, for the last 10 years, has refused to unlock the NFC function of the iPhone to work with other apps. Since the iPhone 6, NFC has been standard on the iPhone. But you’ve only been able to use it for Apple Pay. You can’t use it to read a loyalty card, or to open a website.
That stumbling block was destroyed yesterday. Apple announced that IOS 11 will have NFC compatibility. The development API is already available for app developers.

What does this mean for you?

Well, it means a world of opportunity is opening up. Contactless payments are already gaining a huge foothold in Canada, and Europe. But that’s just part of it.
NFC gift and loyalty cards will be soon behind them. So will hotel keys, and keytags for your gym.
But what’s in it past plastic cards? Well, NFC is all about wireless data transfer, so what if I could put a new iPhone or Android app on a card? What if I gave you a gift card that opens and automatically uploads your gift balance?
I don’t get excited about many things, but this is going to be a big deal in the next year.  Also, there’s an awesome blog about this topic from here.  Keep watching, and as always, read more about me, and email me with questions!
Cole Goebel
Cole Goebel is a POS Industry insider. He's an expert in encoding and barcode data, and has a great knowledge of POS integrations. Cole currently works at Plastic Printers in Minnesota, where he's the Channel Manager. He works directly with POS providers to deliver gift, and loyalty cards to their clients.

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