Smartphone-enabled electronic door locks such as the Unikey
and Goji do
have advantages over their traditional counterparts – digital “keys” can be sent to multiple users’ phones, access to locked rooms can be limited to specific dates and/or times for certain users, and keys stored on lost phones can simply be deactivated. However, as with just about any electronic version of a purely-mechanical device, they do introduce one complicating factor: they require a power supply. The Recordura lock, however, generates its own electricity when users push on its handle.
Having a smartphone in your pocket is like carrying a mobile office around, saving time and energy by having everything you need in one pocket-friendly device. Where printing is concerned, however, it can be fiddly and annoying to get your photos, documents and emails transferred to paper for sharing or storage. Samsung has announced a new range of wireless color laser printers that feature near field communication (NFC) technology to allow smartphone users to print off what they need just by tapping an Xpress C410W series printer.
Tastes in music are such a subjective thing that it’s practically impossible to keep everyone in a crowded environment like a pub or coffee shop happy with the tune selection. Developed by the Mobile Radicals group at the UK’s Lancaster University, the CheckinDJ digital jukebox aims to keep the majority of people happy by using near field communication (NFC) and social networking to poll everyone’s musical tastes.
About this time last year, Samsung announced three new Wi-Fi-packing additions
to its NX mirrorless camera range. Since then, smartphone cameras have come on in leaps and bounds – increasing the megapixel count to within spitting distance of dedicated cameras, while also bumping up overall image quality. Rather than square up to the ubiquitous smartphone, like Samsung's Galaxy Camera
for instance, the new NX2000 reaches out and taps mobile devices on the shoulder to offer a friendly greeting. Thanks to the inclusion of near field communication (NFC), that quick tap is all that's needed to set up direct wireless communication for instant photo sharing and file backup.
Leveraging NFC technology to turn smartphones into keys is an idea that's gaining ground, not just for home access
but for cars
as well. With this and more in mind, automotive supplier Continental has begun testing a smartphone app enabling real-time centralized control for access to, and charging of, electric vehicle fleets. The system is aimed squarely at the fast-growing consumer segment of member-based car-sharing
schemes, as well as corporate and government electric car fleets.
Thanks to the growing number of wireless speaker systems, those of us who have a good-sized digital music collection on our smartphones or tablets no longer have to concern ourselves with docking our device to hear our favorite tunes. Sony is aiming to make complicated wireless setup and fiddly pairing a thing of the past too, with the introduction of a streaming audio system with one-touch near field communication (NFC) connection.
Once upon a time, the analog cassette tape was king. And for those that remember the time, chances are you might also recall having made a mixtape or two as well. Australian-based start-up venture Sharetapes is looking to recapture a little of that old-school magic, albeit with a modern twist, by launching a line of physical cards that you can load-up with playlists from websites like YouTube, Spotify and 8tracks. Users can then share their saved lists with other people’s smartphones using near-field communication (NFC) technology or quick response (QR) scanning codes.
Huge smartphones and phablets are great for some customers. They provide more screen real estate, and can double as miniature tablets. But the bigger these devices get, the more awkward they become for phone calls. If your 5-inch smartphone has you feeling like Zach Morris, then HTC has a solution: give your smartphone its own personal dumbphone.
Mobile phones have already swallowed up the average Joe's diary, compact camera, watch and Walkman. They're working on replacing the wallet
as well – so the next logical step is to go hunting for the last remaining pocket-dwelling device they can gobble up in their mad fury of convergence – your keyring. Smart and secure door access apps and hardware have already sprung up using Bluetooth and Wi-Fi – now there's ShareKey, which uses NFC (near field communication) and aims to be the most secure of all systems.