Here are some products that use NFC:
- Virtual press kits and business cards — Various execs and companies used NFC as a fast way to share their contact information and press releases. All people meeting them had to do was tap their NFC-enabled phone (sorry, iPhone users) to the item, typically a wristband or business card, to access the information. Samsung, for example, handed NFC-enabled wristbands to all attendees at its press conference, and Sharp gave out business cards embedded with its press release.
- Information points such as posters — Caesars Entertainment, owner of eight hotels and casinos in Las Vegas, installed more than 4,500 interactive Samsung TecTiles in its resorts. Anyone with an NFC-enabled device will be able to tap the various TecTiles for information such as game tutorials, show times, restaurant menus, and ticket purchases.
- Speakers — NFC is typically used in these devices to pair a smartphone to a speaker. The music is not actually streamed to the system via NFC but is shared through Bluetooth. Samsung and Sony were two notable companies with NFC speakers.
- Headphones — The function is much like wireless speakers. Users tap their phone to the headphones to allow pairing for the transfer of music. Sony also makes these.
- Boomboxes and other music players — Sony, again.
- Cameras — At least two cameras introduced at CES included NFC capabilities: The Panasonic Lumix ZS30 and the Panasonic Lumix TS5. Along with built-in Wi-Fi, the cameras should enable “the widest range of remote shooting options, remote viewing, and instant sharing on social networks.”
- TVs — LG and Sony were a couple big companies showing off NFC-enabled TVs at CES. Like with audio devices, NFC is used to pair a phone to the TV by tapping the two together.
- Remote controls — In this instance, users tap their phones to their remote instead of their TV to pair the device to the television. Sony is one company doing this.
- Appliances — LG showcased a slew of washers, dryers, ovens, refrigerators, and vacuums with NFC technology. After pairing the appliance with a phone, users can program their products from afar, such as turning on a washing machine while still in the office.
- Other weird kitchen items — Panasonic’s Asian operations have made an NFC-enabled rice cooker and a steam microwave oven. Users can search for recipes and program cooking instructions using their smartphones.
- Computers — HP’s SpectreOne all-in-one desktop PC, announced in September, incorporates NFC technology, which it calls HP TouchZone. Via a sensor built into the base of the unit, users can log into the SpectreOne or transfer files to it by simply swiping a smartphone or another device equipped with NFC. HP’s Envy 14 Spectre ultrabook also includes NFC, as does Sony’s Vaio Tap 20 mobile desktop PC.
- Smart meters for utility companies — Landis+Gyr in late 2011 said it was working with NXP Semiconductor on energy management products with integrated NFC.
- Digital bubble gum machine — Digital advertising agency Razorfish last July developed a high-tech prototype version of the gum ball machine that allows users to download digital content like apps and movies to their NFC-enabled phone for a small fee.
- Heart monitor — Impak Health, a joint venture between Swedish chipmaker Cypak and U.S.-based Meridian Health, developed the RhythmTrak heart monitor. The product tracks certain heart-related data, which can then be downloaded or sent to a clinician by placing it next to an NFC-enabled phone.
- Wii U — It’s not really clear how NFC will be used in this Nintendo console, but it may allow users to do things like add new characters to games.
- Cars — An NFC-enabled smartphone will be able to unlock Hyundai cars by 2015.