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Samsung TecTiles: User programmable NFC stickers automate smartphone functions

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June 13, 2012

Samsung's TecTiles are programmable NFC stickers that can be used to automate various smar...

Samsung's TecTiles are programmable NFC stickers that can be used to automate various smartphone functions

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Despite increasing numbers of smartphones sporting near field communication (NFC) functionality, the technology hasn’t really set the world on fire just yet. The simple fact is that, apart from the limited rollout of cashless transaction systems from the likes of Visa, Google and Orange, there’s still not a hell of a lot that these NFC capabilities can be used for. Samsung is looking to change this with the introduction of NFC stickers called TecTiles that can be programmed to automate various smartphone functions.

Working in conjunction with the free TecTile programming application running on an NFC-enabled Android smartphone, Samsung envisages individuals automating everyday functions, such as launching an app, sending an “at home” text message when walking in the door, putting the phone on silent, or dimming the display and setting an alarm when climbing into bed. Businesses, meanwhile, would be able to let customers check-in on Facebook or foursquare, or connect to Wi-Fi to download content or discount offers.

While Samsung has said it would like to offer cross-category programming in the future, initially the programming will be limited to combining functions within four separate categories. These are:

Settings & Applications
  • Change phone settings (Bluetooth®, Wi-Fi, ringer/media volume, screen brightness, etc.)
  • Launch an application
  • Join a Wi-Fi Network
  • Show a message
Communication
  • Make a call
  • Send a text message
  • Start a Google Talk conversation
  • Share a contact or business card
Location & Web
  • Show an address on a map
  • Open a web page
  • Foursquare or Facebook check-in
Social
  • Automatic Facebook "Like"
  • Update Facebook status
  • Post a tweet or follow a contact on Twitter
  • Connect on LinkedIn
TecTiles are targeted at both individuals and businesses

Once a TecTile has been programmed, it can be read by any NFC-enabled smartphone, including non-Samsung devices such as the HTC One X or LG Optimus Elite. Individual TecTiles can also be reprogrammed, however, the programming can be locked to prevent nefarious types from making changes.

Launching alongside the Galaxy S III, Samsung is selling TecTiles in packs of five for US$14.99.

Source: Samsung

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag.   All articles by Darren Quick
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1 Comment

I would really like to see some encryption in the devices that read the nfc.

So I could read the sticker, but a similar device could no read my phone etc...

Communication

* Make a call

* Send a text message

These only with root permissions to the phone... or a pass code etc.

Its fairly easy to exploit NFC devices... google it..

Fábio Dias
13th June, 2012 @ 06:30 am PDT
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