NFC … or is it called KFC? This article definitely won’t show you the newest technology of frying chicken, but the newest upcoming technology in the mobile phone industry.
What is NFC?
NFC (Near Field Communication) is a program allowing sending bits of data from a hand device to a machine, which is able to read and process that information. NFC is actually supported by hardware embedded in the latest generation of smartphones. By 2014, it is estimated that around 300 million of mobile devices will have NFC, which would be around 20% of the current total amount of smartphones. Basically, the technology would enable customers to pay for their purchase simply by swiping their mobiles at the till. For instance, Starbucks, amongst others, have started a trial period for NFC at selected stores in the USA and UK.
NFC’s use in hotels
The biggest Georgian and Victorian doors manufacturer, Yale Door, has successfully conducted a trial with a Swedish hotel chain, which allowed guests to use their smartphones to access their rooms. Imagine, avoiding long queues at the check-in counters. At the Clarion Hotel in Stockholm, Yale Door used the NFC technology in order to enable guests to check-in remotely. The hotel reservation is made as usual via the website or through any travel agency. On the date of arrival, a welcome text on your phone includes a web address, where customers can check-in whenever they want. Once this stage is confirmed through the company’s free app, the room key is sent directly to your phone. So instead of waiting at the counter, when you arrive at the hotel, you can just walk past that and access directly your room by simply holding the phone against the lock.
Moreover, it is possible to complete a quick self-checkout by simply touching the checkout point located at the front desk. Besides making the stay for the guests more enjoyable, it enables the staff to spend more time with individual guests instead of having to deal with check-ins and check-outs. A great way to increase the so-called guest experience!
This is in fact the first time in the world that “mobile keys” were used in such a way. No worries my interested readers – NFC will soon be available for private use. Hold tight, this will allow users to assign temporary mobile keys to WHOEVER they want to. Nanny forgot her keys – you quickly sent her a mobile key via text message – problem solved! However, old nannies will have to keep up with the technique, in order to stay in business – No offence