What is NFC?

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What is NFC?

NFC (Near Field Communication) is a proximity-based short-range wireless communication standard that operates at the frequency of 13.56 MHz in the radio band.

Developed jointly by Sony Corporation and NXP Semiconductors (former Phillips Semiconductors), NFC was certified under the ISO/IEC 18092 international standard in December 2003. Approved as an international standard, NFC is expected to be used for IC cards and various other devices, such as mobile phones, PCs and electric home appliances.

NFC is characterized by two major features.

(1) Allows two-way communication

Bringing a device or card containing an NFC chip or IC chip compatible with the NFC communication standard within 10 centimeters of such a device or card enables two-way communication at rates between 106 kbps and 424 kbps. In addition to data reading/writing, text, image and video data can be exchanged just by holding up the devices. For example, data can be transferred between a mobile phone equipped with an NFC chip and an NFC chip-mounted PC by bringing the two devices close together, to send an image taken with the mobile phone to the PC.

(2) Compatibility with contactless IC cards operating on different communication standards

Many different communication standards have been adopted for contactless IC cards. Previously, it was impossible for IC cards with different standards to communicate with the same reader/writer. However, by mounting an NFC chip on a reader/writer, an IC card with one standard can be compatible with another IC card with a different standard. For example, the NFC technology enables the reading and writing of data by using one reader/writer, between FeliCa, a contactless IC card used widely in Japan, and Mifare (ISO14443 Type A), a contactless IC card used globally.

Ranges supported by NFC

NFC was approved under the ISO/IEC 18092 [NFCIP-1] international standard in December 2003 and is compatible both with the ISO14443 Type A and FeliCa air protocols. Upon approval under ISO/IEC 21481[NFCIP-2] in January 2005, NFC is now compatible with the ISO14443 Type B and ISO15693 air protocols.

Ranges supported by NFC

TOPPAN TDK LABEL applies the proximity-based short-range wireless communication standard (NFC) in a reader/writer to supply a reader/writer module that is compatible with contactless IC cards based on various standards.

  • - FeliCa is a contactless IC card technology developed by Sony Corporation and is a registered trademark of Sony Corporation.
  • - Mifare is a registered trademark of NXP Semiconductors.
  • - Suica is a registered trademark of East Japan Railway Company (JR-EAST).
  • - PASMO is a registered trademark of PASMO Co., Ltd.
  • - Edy is the name of a prepaid type electronic money service operated by bitWallet, Inc.

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