NFC Forum Starts Tag Certification Program

The NFC Forum has started an initiative to create a Tag Certification Program and called upon tag vendors and solutions providers to join the NFC Forum and participate in the effort. This new program will give organizations involved in products and services that are using NFC tags, a means of assuring global interoperability with NFC-enabled mobile devices. They will now be able to certify their tags as compliant to the NFC Forum’s technical specifications, thereby delivering a consistent and satisfying user experience. The Tag Certification Program applies to all tag types specified by the NFC Forum (Types 1/2/3/4/5), which are the most broadly supported tags in the industry.

NFC tags are essentially antenna-equipped microchips that store information that can be accessed by NFC-enabled devices like smartphones. Small and affordable, NFC tags can be embedded in everything from posters, magazines, audio accessories and household appliances to business cards, retail shelf talkers and other everyday consumer products. NFC tags support a wide range of applications, including mobile marketing, public transport ticketing and access, authentication of luxury goods, and connecting unconnected objects to the Internet of Things. The use of NFC tags makes it easy to connect speakers and wireless headphones to mobile phones, deliver visitor information at museums, protect consumers from purchasing counterfeit goods, and much more.

Innovative tag applications are growing as NFC experiences increased market adoption across the majority of mobile device OEMs and operating systems - said Koichi Tagawa, NFC Forum Chairman. According to ABI Research, 36.4 billion devices will be connected to the Internet by 2020. The market for NFC tags is expected to grow at a significant CAGR as the technology is key to transforming the consumer connectivity experience.

The Certification of the technical specifications for NFC Tags will make the user experience much better and easier, as they will no longer be restricted to tags from a single vendor. The NFC Forum has established the Tag Certification Program’s organizational structure, work scope, and goals, and is now welcoming organizations in the tag industry to join the NFC Forum and contribute to the program.

The new compliance initiative is being spearheaded by the NFC Forum’s Internet of Things Special Interest Group (SIG) and Compliance Committee. If you make or use tags or accessories with NFC tags, now is the time to join the Forum and help ensure that all NFC tag technologies deliver a consistent, global connectivity experience across all applications and environments. 

The new tag certification initiative will be part of the established NFC Forum Certification Program. NFC Forum members facilitate the development and market availability of products that comply with the NFC Forum specification(s) through participation in the program. Fully embracing the Certification Program provides differentiation for NFC Forum members by shortening the product adoption process, lowering adoption costs, and making product implementations easier for partners to integrate.

Companies that want to join the NFC Forum’s Internet of Things SIG or Compliance Committee as contributing members can request membership information from the NFC Forum. The NFC Forum offers lower-cost Startup and Implementer membership levels for companies that plan to implement its standards and certify products. Click here to learn more about the Tag Certification Program.