Subscribe to news feeds using NFC

Subscribing to an RSS feed on a mobile device is hard: the browser is not connected to an RSS reader, so you need to type the entire URL into your feed reader (and they typically contain all sorts of nasty characters that require 11 fingers, your nose and a dead chicken to type). The other possibility is to use some sort of a preloaded directory, but with 70 million blogs and feeds out there, it's not likely that your favourites are going to be on that list.

Well, I've been talking about NFC before - you just touch a small tag with your mobile phone, and things happen. It seems that two companies in Japan are now using tags so that users can just touch them to subscribe to an RSS feed. No need for anything else - just grab your phone, touch a tag, and you will start getting news. Of course, it actually requires you to first find the tag you want to subscribe to... But if it's embedded in an object ("touch here to start receiving news and updates about your new car"), or available on location ("touch here to get the latest lunch menus to your mobile phone") then it should not be a problem.

It's strange: after all this time of trying to "virtualize" the life: making it more and more location and time independent, giving us the freedom to be anywhere with anyone at anytime, a technology comes along that works from the fact that you are there, physically present, thinking about things that are right in front of you. And I don't think that's a very far-fetched assumption.

Most people live a very location-bound life: many of us travel between home, work, and grocery store, with only occasional trips to other places. Finding the right tags might not be such a problem after all.

BTW, there's a nice article about the promise of NFC in this weeks Economy Technology Quarterly (€). I say promise, because it's still quite a lot about marketing fluff. But what I like about the article is that it's very feet-on-the-ground: "it's too early to tell whether it will fly, it certainly looks good, important companies are backing it up, market is growing, we'll see". Maybe the Great Bubbles taught us something?


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"Main_blogentry_091205_2" last changed on 09-Dec-2005 17:04:31 EET by JanneJalkanen.