Among technology's previous generation of Next Big Things, we heard a lot of talk about the potential of NFC (Near-Field Communication). Smartphone manufacturers were excited enough to start putting NFC on over 40 production models in 2011 alone -- despite the fact that there were very few real-world applications. Google tried to jump-start NFC with an ambitious Google Wallet project, and Samsung's recently unveiled TecTiles hopes to make app-loving users excited about the possibilities.
First, the basics. NFC is a form of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) that operates in an extremely short range. NFC devices need to be (almost) close enough to touch, which reduces but does not eliminate external interference -- intentional, or otherwise. Unlike the similar Bluetooth specification, the NFC connection does not require pairing; any two devices can make a connection. http://www.patexia.com/feed/the-nfc-finals-google-wallet-vs-tectiles-20120615