There was a time when Quick Response or QR codes were all the rage. Scanning the abstract black and white square image with a special app or your smartphone’s camera will redirect you to a website or a predetermined application in a snap. Those QR codes were among the first technological breakthroughs that connected the real and digital worlds in ways no other invention has. Over time, though, chinks on the QR code’s armor started revealing why it’s not entirely foolproof. As a result, alternatives cropped up, one of which are the NFC chips.
NFC stands for near field communication, which is a wireless technology meant to transfer data between devices that are NFC-capable. The NFC chip is an integral component of NFC tags, an overall term referring to stickers, labels, keyfobs, cards, wristbands, and anything else that may be embedded with the chip and an antenna to allow for the wireless communication. Unlike QR codes that sometimes require a third-party app to function, the technology behind NFC chips is already built into most newer smartphone models.
QR codes, when scanned, may redirect a user to inactive websites or the codes themselves may not be scannable due to poor lighting conditions. In contrast, you can just touch or tap your smartphone on an NFC tag to trigger a desired action. Since QR codes are usually printed on cardboard or paper, they can easily be damaged, bent, or scratched. These can also be discarded after use, making them susceptible to counterfeiting; thus, security is compromised.
On the other hand, the encryption technology of NFC chips is extremely sophisticated, which makes it flexible, easier to work with than QR codes, and so much more secured. Obviously, there are so many things that make these chips more convenient to use than QR codes. Hence, it’s not surprising why these chips are proving themselves to be a better alternative to QR codes.