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Near field communications, which is more commonly referred to simply as NFC, has evolved tremendously over the past few years. It is a technology that allows for short range wireless connectivity between devices. It lets you share data and generally relies on short distances of only a few inches, which means that to use it, you would have to be in very close proximity to another device that uses NFC technology.

NFC is a type of technology that is no longer considered a luxury that appears in a select few smartphones. These days, it is actually a lot more important and it is unusual to find wireless devices that don’t use it. This is because it serves a variety of purposes that benefit both consumers and merchants alike.

One of the most basic functions of near field communications technology is to share data or content from one device to another. Something as simple as sharing photos from your smartphone with a friend or family member is a good example. In order for NFC to work its magic, both phones would need to be connected to Wi-Fi and have Bluetooth enabled. From there, you would simply touch the backs of the devices and the photos would begin to download to the other person’s phone.

It is also possible to make payments directly from a smartphone thanks to near field communication technology. Services such as Google Wallet and the new Apple Pay make this possible. These features allow you to store your credit card information digitally right into your smartphone as a virtual wallet. If you go shopping at a store that accepts such a payment method, all that is needed is a few taps or scans at checkout. Because the major credit card companies accept digital wallets thanks to the advancements in technology in the past few years, many merchant accounts accept it as well. As a result, credit card processing is even easier as all of your information is stored digitally.

Near field communication is also ideal for business. With it, employers are better able to keep track of their employees and can receive real-time updates for more efficient scheduling. Customer service is also improved thanks to NFC technology because it can be used to help customers find information they need. For instance, there are QR code readers available as apps that can be installed on phones. Many stores rely on QR codes and welcome customers to scan them for great deals and coupons. Thanks to NFC, it is also possible to store rewards cards from favorite stores to your smartphone.