- Written by Nathan Drake
It’s easy to imagine or at least research the power near field communication will have on the business world. Just search for “near field communication” on the Internet and you will find plenty of possible uses for NFC, and most of these lists of uses will begin with NFC payment structures.
Usually, the best ways people can imagine the uses of revolutionary technology like NFC is either militaristic or business-oriented. In the case of NFC, I don’t know about the militaristic uses, but I do know businesses and the corporate world in general are beginning to jump on the technology as a way to increase traffic and conversions of that traffic into increased sales.
But what about a useful way for the individual person or small business owner to make money on NFC. It’s daunting to look at the sheer numbers in projected increased sales, especially when the kind of money people are looking to make off the technology, and this daunting feeling makes it easy to write off NFC as something for rich people, something to use to make others money, not yourself.
Nokia has recently come out with a mobile app for making NFC tags that is probably going to change all that, if not through the app itself, then through the multiple apps that are sure to follow. These apps make it possible for people to make NFC tags, the parts of the data transfer process which are responsible for holding the initial information. Being able to make and order NFC tags, and to have those tags attached to the kinds of media which bring about increased contact with potential clients and customers has brought the future of NFC to the home and small business.
This particular app would allow for people to do two things that, if they could do them before, were extremely inconvenient. First, they can order NFC tags with whatever information they deem valuable and have these tags put into stickers and business cards, advertising their goods services at a level they may have imagined only attainable by larger corporations. Second, they are able to source blank tags in low volumes.
Basically, the app, which features a readymade gallery of possible designs as well as the ability to allow the user to upload their own pictures and designs from their phone to the app, allows users to skip the normal technological step. Over the years, I have come to call this step the hand-me-down effect. The step is amount of time smaller corporations and small businesses usually have to wait until they can afford, or, in the case of proprietary technological advancements and patents, gain access to, new advertising technology. Whereas this period of time used to be around 3 to 5 years, small business will be able to engage in the same type of advertising as larger corporations, even if they cannot engage in the sheer volume of these advertisements.
In the future, I can imagine this being an extremely valuable asset to companies, because at present the percentage of adults owning smartphones is still relatively low at barely less than 50 percent, according to Nielsen. However, the percentages have steadily risen in recent years as the price of the smartphone decreased, and when this percentage continues on and tops 70 percent, 80, 90, anyone who did not take part whole-heartedly in this advertising revolution will regret it as their competition laughs all the way to the bank.
Don’t believe me? Don’t believe that the early adoption of new business models is perhaps the most important part of running a business in the digital world, a world in which our way of life seems to fundamentally change every five years? Ask Borders Books how they’re doing, and how not opening an online bookstore until 10 years after Barnes & Noble worked for them.