Hi, Mi Fans
Welcome to Tech Class session. NFC is something you may often hear mentioned with regard to new smartphones, but it's something which few people know about, or even use. Yes, it’s an acronym, but not all acronyms have to be scary. NFC is both easy to understand and can be incredibly useful. Here’s all you need to know what NFC is and why you should use it.
What is NFC?
NFC stands for Near Field Communication. Essentially, it's a way for your phone to interact with something in close proximity. It operates within a radius of about 4-10 cm and provides a wireless connection between your device and another. This allows for two-way communication, with both devices involved being able to send and receive information. This NFC connection does not rely on Wi-Fi, 3G, LTE or otherwise, and it doesn't cost anything to use.NFC devices are used in contactless payment systems, similar to those used in credit cards and electronic ticket smartcards and allow mobile payment to replace/supplement these systems. This is sometimes referred to as NFC/CTLS (Contactless) or CTLS NFC. NFC is used for social networking, for sharing contacts, photos, videos or files. NFC-enabled devices can act as electronic identity documents and keycards. NFC offers a low-speed connection with a simple setup that can be used to bootstrap more capable wireless connections.
How does NFC work on Android?
NFC transmits or receives data via radio waves. It's an established standard for wireless communication, so if devices stick to the NFC protocols they'll be able to communicate with each other. It differs from Bluetooth in that it functions through electromagnetic induction. This means there can be a passive device, such as a poster or sticker, requiring no power source of its own that can transmit data when an active device, like your smartphone, comes into contact with it.
As an active NFC device, a smartphone can send and receive data over NFC. It encompasses the full range - three modes - of NFC:
- Reader/writer (e.g. for reading tags in NFC posters)
- Card emulation (e.g. for making payments)
- Peer-to-peer (e.g. for file transfers)
NFC tags are passive devices, which means that they operate without a power supply of their own and are reliant on an active device to come into range before they are activated. The trade-off here is that these devices can’t really do any processing of their own, instead, they are simply used to transfer information to an active device, such as a smartphone. In order to power these NFC tags, electromagnetic induction is used to create a current in the passive device. We won’t get too technical on this, but the basic principle is that coils of wire can be used to produce electromagnetic waves, which can then be picked up and turned back into a current by another coil of wire. This is very similar to the techniques used for wireless charging technologies, albeit much less powerful.
Xiaomi has NFC tags manufactured which are basically stickers that you can program to do something when your phone reads the NFC. These tags contain data and are typically read-only, but may be rewriteable. They can be custom-encoded by their manufacturers or use the specifications provided by the NFC Forum, an industry association charged with promoting the technology and setting key standards. The tags can securely store personal data such as debit and credit card information, loyalty program data, PINs and networking contacts, among other information. The NFC Forum defines four types of tags that provide different communication speeds and capabilities in terms of configuration, memory, security, data retention and write endurance. Tags currently offer between 96 and 4,096 bytes of memory.
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Credits: Wikipedia, AndroidPIT, Google Images.
Uses Of NFC
- Make a payment: NFC can also be used to make mobile payments. Download Android Pay or Mi-Pay, add your credit or debit card details, then use it in any store that has a contactless payment terminal.
- Send a phone number: NFC is the simplest way to give a person your digits because you don’t actually have to type any digits. Just navigate to a contact in your address book (it can be yours or somebody else's), then press your phone to the recipients. When your phone says “touch to beam”, just tap the display.
- Send a picture: Open the picture you wish to send in your preferred image viewer, then bring the phones together.
- Send a document: Navigate to the file you want to share and bring the devices closer.
- Direct someone to your new favorite app: With NFC you can direct fellow Android fans straight to the Play Store to pick up your favorite apps or games. As long as you are using the app or game at the time, NFC will direct the recipient to the app's Google Play page.
- Send directions: There are many occasions when you are required to explain directions to somebody, but with NFC you don't have to. Use Google Maps to create some directions, then bring the phones together. Beautiful.
- Launch an app on someone else's phone: If you are using an app or playing a game that is already installed on someone else device, you can launch it for them. Say you are using Google Photos and your friend wants to check their photos too, but can't find that app: tap the phones together and beam.
There are two modes of pairing using NFC:-
- NFC employs two different codings to transfer data. If an active device transfers data at 106 kbit/s, a modified Miller coding with 100% modulation is used. In all other cases, Manchester coding is used with a modulation ratio of 10%.
- NFC devices are able to receive and transmit data at the same time. Thus, they can check for potential collisions if the received signal frequency does not match with the transmitted signal's frequency.
- A standard Ultralight NFC tag can store a URL of around 41 characters, whereas the newer NTAG203 NFC tag can store a URL of around 132 characters.
Xiaomi devices that support NFC
Mi 5 Pro
Mi Note 2
There you have it. NFC provides the quickest way to set up connections between electronic devices and provides the fastest solution for file transfer between handsets in close proximity. NFC is great for when you’re out of credit, out of 3G or LTE data, have no Wi-Fi or carrier signal, or don’t have a cable to do a PC transfer. It’s quick, easy, and bumping two phones together is fun.
In Case You have missed any tech class thread!
Chapter 32: MIMO Technology Explained
Chapter 23:All About Display
Chapter 24:All About Barcodes
Chapter 25:All About QR Codes.
Chapter 26: All You Need To Know About Virtual Reality(VR)
Chapter 27: All You Need To Know About APNChapter 28: All About IP(Ingress Protection)Ratings
Chapter 30: All About USB debugging
Chapter 31: All About Fast Charging
Chapter 33: All About Gi-Fi
Chapter 34: All you need to know about ADB
Chapter 35: All about Factory reset
Chapter 36: More about on Internet Protocol (IP).
Do you use NFC on your smartphone? What uses have you found for it?
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[Discussion] [Device Team] [Tech Class] Chapter 43 : All About NFC