Track employees, subcontractors and assets using NFC tags
For many years now the codeREADr app has been used to read and validate NFC tags for event access control. We think that use case for NFC will grow dramatically as Apple’s NFC-enabled devices are increasingly used for event access control.
What we’re even more excited about is the increased use of NFC tags as a secure proof-of-presence technology, especially in the healthcare, building maintenance and security industries. We’ve been offering that technology since 2012 but adoption has been relatively slow.
What’s going to drive growth for NFC proof-of-presence?
- Lower cost NFC labels? Printing barcode labels is a lot cheaper than NFC labels, with or without supplemental barcodes. As tag volumes ramp up, tag prices are going down. However, they will always be far more expensive than barcode labels. So lower costs help, but that will not be the big driver.
- Faster NFC scanning devices? In the past, the built-in NFC readers on almost all Android OS devices have been slow to read and awkward to use in the field. There are new devices available now that solve that problem – they are fast and accurate (see our article about Famoco devices). But that alone won’t be the big driver.
- Using iOS devices to read NFC tags? Definitely a big help, but it’s going to take a while (years) until the majority of iOS devices can read NFC – unless Apple opens that up to iPhone 6 and below.
- Awareness? Absolutely. In our opinion, the biggest hurdle has been the general awareness of NFC technology. That’s going to change in a big way in 2018.
We’ve updated our NFC reading technology to have basically 3 modes:
- Read and validate the UID if nothing else is written to the NFC tag.
- Read and validate the data written to the NFC tag, ignoring the UID.
- (New) Read and validate the UID only, even if something else is written to the NFC tag.
Does your application need us to read and record both? If so, do we also need to validate both? Let our support team know!
When validating and/or recording the UID, what else is included with the formal scan record?
Who read it (the app user)
What they read (the UID value)
When they read it (timestamps)
Where the read it (GPS or menu-selected)\
How they captured it (i.e. that the app read an NFC tag)
Why they read it (for what task they were reading tags)