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A "Cool" New Application for NFC Technology

New NFC applications for use in specific enterprise operations continue to emerge. American Thermal Instruments (ATI) recently introduced a NFC-based temperature monitoring solution, which combines a smartphone application with the company’s LOG-IC NFC data logger to scan, review, and communicate real-time temperature monitoring data. The ATI smartphone application is the first of its kind that enables fully functional end-to-end temperature monitoring in real-time.

The ATI solution is inherently mobile (since its software component is deployed on smartphones) and has the added benefit of reducing the upfront hardware investment costs by leveraging a device that many cold chain management workers already carry. As a result, this temperature monitoring solution is more affordable to deploy relative to competing solutions that require dedicated readers and other hardware.

While the ATI solution is an interesting and innovative use of NFC, it will be interesting to see how well the technology performs in this application. Given the relatively short read distance that is associated with NFC technology, placement options for the tag will be limited to the perimeter of pallets/boxes.

Temperature monitoring solutions that leverage other forms of RF technology with longer read distances, on the other hand, typically enable sensors to be placed in the center of a container, giving a more accurate temperature reading. It will be interesting to see if these limited placement options negatively impact the accuracy of the ATI solution.

As fans of NFC technology we are excited to see it gaining acceptance for a broader range of operational applications. We look forward to seeing what other types of innovative enterprise NFC applications continue to emerge.

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