When smartphones first started coming equipped with NFC hardware, it seemed almost like a solution in search of a problem. The technology is very cool, no question, but who would find a way to make it into something useful? Our eyes have largely been on the systems in development that would offer NFC-based payments in retail settings, but those have yet to take off and we’re beginning to wonder if consumers will end up seeing any advantage to NFC over just using a credit card. While we’ve been waiting to see what would become of NFC payments, other developers have been hard at work thinking up new ways to use the technology, with both Google and doubleTwist recently showing off their efforts.
We just looked at the latest update to doubleTwist, adding Apple AirPlay support. This update also brings with it file sharing over NFC, letting you initiate transfers between two smartphones running doubleTwist and having the necessary hardware. You need only touch the phones together to start the process, which lets you share MP3s between Android devices. It looks like it avoids needing to include any sort of authentication by requiring close physical contact between phones.
At Google I/O, the company talked about some of the features coming in Ice Cream Sandwich, including “0-click interactions” based around NFC. This also uses NFC to share data, but just how the sharing works depends on the state of the phone. If you’re viewing a website on one phone, bringing it up against another phone prompts that one to load the same page. In the same manner, you can share short chunks of data, like someone’s info from your contact list. Google plans on adding this ability to most system apps for ICS, and has an API available to let developers get in on the action, as well.
Source: Engadget, Mobile Burn