TOP
STORIES
 1 of 5
Enter Polycom’s Workplace of the Future
Polycom hosted Workplace of the Future event in New York City,…
 2 of 5
9 Ways the Corporate Meeting Room Evolved at InfoComm 2015
Unified communications and collaboration were hot tech trends on…
 3 of 5
19 Dealer-Friendly Difference Makers at InfoComm
Now that another InfoComm is in the books, here are a slew of…
 4 of 5
8 Eye-Popping Digital Sign­age Dis­plays at Info­Comm
Check out this round-up of digital displays that made us stop and…
 5 of 5
Editor’s Pick: 13 Best Products of InfoComm 2015
Product editor Bob Archer singles out the most innovative,…
NFC Changes Digital Signage as We Know It
Near-field communication technologies are poised to transform the digital signage experience in ways QR codes can't.

Article


Near-field communications technologies will transform how consumers interact with digital signage.
February 25, 2013 By Mikhail Damiani

Recently, one would be hard-pressed to read through any tech journal or digital signage publication without finding some mention of mobile interactivity. More specifically, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding NFC (near-field communication). But why the sudden surge of excitement and evangelization of the not-so-new technology?

NFC has been around for years, and major manufacturers like Nokia have been embedding the technology into their handsets since as early as 2006, though these phones didn’t make their way into the U.S. until 2011.

With tens of billions of dollars in revenues from mobile payments on the line, the potential stakeholders – of which there are many – have been busy carving up the proverbial pie for the past few years, preventing the U.S. consumer from taking full advantage of the power of NFC. But finally, with the cell phone manufacturers, wireless carriers, credit card processors, payment technology companies and other key players seemingly making progress on establishing some sort of standard, the floodgates have opened and NFC-enabled phones have started crossing the U.S. border in meaningful numbers. 

The first major NFC-enabled phone to hit the U.S. market was Google’s Nexus-S by Samsung in early 2011. Other manufacturers including Nokia, LG, Sony Ericsson, HTC, Blackberry and Motorola have since released several phone models that include NFC, bringing the total current market penetration of NFC in the U.S. to about 10 percent.

Business research and consulting firm Mercator Advisory Group predicts that number to grow to 36 percent by 2014.  As the number of devices continues to grow, so will the consumer applications for NFC, which provide an opportunity for brands to communicate with their target audience on their mobile phones.

NFC’s Role in Signage
While the ability to pay for things with your phone and potentially replace credit cards is arguably the most powerful and transformational aspect of NFC, the near-term opportunity is simply about making physical-to-digital connections easier.  With mobile marketing being the fastest growing segment of advertising, the ability to leverage NFC for new and improved ways to connect with consumers in a relevant context is extremely appealing to digital signage owners.

Imagine walking into a movie theater lobby and seeing an NFC-enabled display for an upcoming movie release.  By tapping your phone on the designated engagement zone, you can view the trailer of the movie; if you like what you see, you can purchase the ticket right there and then. This type of experience is revolutionary.

Companies have already started deploying campaigns with similar applications. RMG Networks, a place-based leader in Air Travel Media, partnered with Blue Bite to deliver downloads of the Hotel Tonight mobile app in its airport locations, targeting business travelers - the core demographic of the application. Users who were viewing the digital signage were encouraged to tap the NFC-enabled placard adjacent to the screen in order to directly download the application and take advantage of the monetary incentive that was offered. 

About the author

Mikhail Damiani, CEO and co-founder of Blue Bite, has spearheaded the company’s NFC efforts with its mTAG Platform. He is also responsible for Blue Bite’s strategic partnerships, sales and client management. At Digital Signage Expo 2012 in Las Vegas, Damiani will host a pre-conference seminar, “Near-Field Communications: Changing the Digital Signage Value Proposition.” Register here.
View all posts by Mikhail Damiani
Social Bookmark or Share This
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • Yahoo! Bookmarks
  • Google Bookmarks
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Reddit
  • Windows Live
  • LinkedIn
  • Evernote
  • E-mail


  • Latest
  • Blogs
  • Photos
  • Resources



Recent comments

With respect, I think that while this article is accurate on many points, it seriously misses the larger point…

Posted by Shyam Devadas on 2015 07 03 · commented on
'Is WOW the Right Word? The Lack of Innovation at InfoComm 2015'.

Normally I would try to stay away from the manufacturer “product plug” as sometimes it may be…

Posted by Paul Harris on 2015 07 03 · commented on
'Is WOW the Right Word? The Lack of Innovation at InfoComm 2015'.

Craig, I probably spent 8 + hours of booth duty in front of the Surface Hub.  The end user feedback there…

Posted by RBonham on 2015 06 26 · commented on
'Microsoft Gets It Right at InfoComm 2015'.

I think the Key Note address was somewhat revealing on the subject of Big Data and our industry’s disposition.…

Posted by billmullin on 2015 06 25 · commented on
'Is WOW the Right Word? The Lack of Innovation at InfoComm 2015'.