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NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • NFC is a set of standards for smartphones and similar devices to establish radio communication with each other by touching them together or bringing them into close proximity, usually not more than a few centimetres.
  • Present and anticipated applications include contactless transactions, data exchange, and simplified setup of more complex communications such as Wi-Fi. NFC builds upon RFID (radio frequency identification) systems by allowing two-way communication between endpoints, where earlier systems such as contactless smart cards were one-way only.
  • NFC enabled smartphones have the potential to replace credit cards. This is because NFC phones pack a smart chip- a complex 80-character code that is really hard to crack. Such a device can safely store confidential credit card details and be handy for purchases on the go.
  • NFC can be deployed in ticketing services, rural banking, interactive and targeted advertising, healthcare, hospitality, libraries and pharmacies.
  • NFC can be used in social networking situations, such as sharing contacts, photos, videos or files, and entering multiplayer mobile games. In fact, an NFC phone could become the single key to access to your car, home and office.

NFC VERSUS BLUETOOTH | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • Bluetooth like NFC is also a short-range communication technologies but one that allows interaction between communication devices as much as 10 meters apart as opposed to just few centimetres in case of NFC.
  • NFC operates at slower speeds than Bluetooth, but consumes far less power and doesn’t require pairing.
  • NFC sets up faster than standard Bluetooth, but is not faster than Bluetooth low energy.
  • With NEC, instead of performing manual configurations to identify devices, the connection between two NFC devices is automatically established quickly: in less than a tenth of a second.
  • The maximum data transfer rate of NFC (424 kbit/s) is slower than that of Bluetooth V2.1 (2.1 Mbit/s).

HYPERTEXT TRANSFER PROTOCOL (HTTP)

  • The Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is an application protocol for distributed, collaborative, hypermedia information systems. HTTP is the foundation of data communication for the World Wide Web.
  • It is a multi-linear set of objects, building a network by using logical links (the so-called hyperlinks) between the nodes (e.g. text or words). HTTP is the protocol to exchange or transfer hypertext.
  • HTTP is designed to permit intermediate network elements to improve or enable communications between clients and servers.
  • HTTP resources are identified and located on the network by Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs)—or, more specifically, Uniform Resource Locators (URLs)—using the http or https URI schemes.
  • URIs and hyperlinks in Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) documents form webs of interlinked hypertext documents.

HYPERTEXT MARKUP LANGUAGE (HTML)

  • Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) is the main markup language for displaying web pages and other information that can be displayed in a web browser.
  • HTML is written in the form of HTML elements consisting of tags enclosed in angle brackets (like <html>), within the web page content.
  • HTML tags most commonly come in pairs like <h1> and </h 1>, although some tags, known as empty elements, are unpaired, for example <img>.
  • The first tag in a pair is the start tag, the second tag is the end tag (they are also called opening tags and closing tags). In between these tags web designers can add text, tags, comments and other types of text-based content.
  • HTML elements form the building blocks of all websites. HTML allows images and objects to be embedded and can be used to create interactive forms.

WORLD WIDE WEB (WVVW)

The World Wide Web (WWW or W3), commonly known as the Web, or the “Information Superhighway”, is a system of interlinked hypertext documents accessed via the Internet.

With a web browser, one can view web pages that may contain text, images, videos, and other multimedia, and navigate between them via hyperlinks.

TOUCH SCREEN | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • A touchscreen is an electronic visual display that can detect the presence and location of a touch within the display area. The term generally refers to touching the display of the device with a finger or hand.
  • Touchscreens can also sense other passive objects, such as a stylus. Touchscreens are common in devices such as game consoles, all-in-one computers, tablet computers, and smartphones.

The touchscreen has two main attributes.:

  • First, it enables one to interact directly with what is displayed, rather than indirectly with a pointer controlled by a mouse or touchpad.
  • Secondly, it lets one do so without requiring any intermediate device that would need to be held in the hand (other than a stylus, which is optional for most modern touchscreens).

RESISTIVE TOUCHSCREEN

  • A resistive touchscreen panel comprises several layers, the most important of which are two thin, transparent electrically-resistive layers separated by a thin space. These layers face each other, with a thin gap between.
  • A voltage is passed through one layer, and sensed at the other. When an object, such as a fingertip or stylus tip, presses down on the outer surface, the two layers touch to become connected at that point: The panel then behaves as a pair of voltage dividers, one axis at a time.
  • By rapidly switching between each layer, the position of a pressure on the screen can be read.
  • Resistive touch is used in restaurants, factories and hospitals due to its high resistance to liquids and contaminants. A major benefit of resistive touch technology is its low cost.
  • Disadvantages include the need to press down and a risk of damage by sharp objects. Resistive touchscreens also suffer from poorer contrast, due to having additional reflections from the extra layer of material placed over the screen.

CAPACITIVE TOUCHSCREEN

  • A capacitive touchscreen panel consists of an insulator such as glass, coated with a transparent conductor such as indium tin oxide (ITO). As the human body is also an electrical conductor, touching the surface of the screen results in a distortion of the screen’s electrostatic field, measurable as a change in capacitance.
  • The location is then sent to the controller for processing. Unlike a resistive touchscreen, one cannot use a capacitive touchscreen through most types of electrically insulating material, such as gloves; one requires a special capacitive stylus, or a special-application glove with an embroidered patch of conductive thread passing through it and contacting the user’s fingertip.
  • This disadvantage especially affects usability in consumer electronics, such as touch tablet PCs and capacitive smartphones in cold weather.

MOBILE NUMBER PORTABILITY (MNP)

  • Mobile Number portability is a service that allows a subscriber to select a new mobile telephone carrier without requiring a new number to be issued. Typically, it is the responsibility of the former carrier to “map” the old number to the undisclosed number assigned by the new carrier.
  • This is achieved by maintaining a database of numbers. A dialled number is initially received by the original carrier and quickly rerouted to the new carrier.
  • Multiple porting references must be maintained even if the subscriber returns to the original carrier.

MNP was launched in some parts of India in November 2010 and by January 2011; it was spread across the whole country. The terms and conditions of using an MNP service are as following:

  • User will have to obtain a unique porting number by sending a SMS
  • The code along with filled forms and valid identity proof documents need to be submitted to the new operator.
  • Rs 19 is the switching fee.
  • A user can switch after 90 days of a new connection being activated.
  • Postpaid users need to clear all dues before applying to switch.
  • Prepaid users lose any remaining talk time after switching.

MNP request can be cancelled within 24 hours and a new request should be processed within 7 days.

MOBILE SEVA | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • Mobile Seva is an UN award-winning e-governance initiative by government of India. The programme was launched in 2011 by Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY).
  • The programme takes benefit of ubiquitous mobile phone use all over India, to enable interaction between the Indian government and its citizens.
  • By the end of May, 2014, more than 1000 government bodies from all over India had integrated their services through Mobile Seva, this integration was enabled through various methods such as text messages, mobile applications Unstructured Supplementary Service Data, and Interactive Voice Response System.
  • The system by May 2014 had delivered 930 million mobile text messages to Indian citizens. 318 “pull based” services were available. The Mobile App Store hosted on the Mobile e-governance Service Delivery Gateway provides 300 mobile applications for 24×7 service.
  • Amongst applications available are those related to tracking of Right to Information, passport applications, status of voters lists, locating of hospitals, police stations, ATMs, post offices, railway stations, hostels, sending of alerts in emergencies, downloading of various statutory documents such as birth, death certificates, pension forms, remote monitoring of health parameters by health professionals, maintenance of health records, processing of loud speaker permits.

M-PESA | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • M-Pesa (M for mobile, pesa for money) is a mobile-phone based money transfer and micro-financing service, launched in 2007 by Vodafone for Safaricom and Vodacom, the largest mobile network operators in Kenya and Tanzania.
  • It has since expanded to Afghanistan, South Africa, India and in 2014 to Eastern Europe. M-Pesa allows users with a national ID card or passport to deposit, withdraw, and transfer money easily with a mobile device.
  • M-Pesa is a branchless banking service, meaning that it is designed to enable users to complete basic banking transactions without visiting a bank branch.
  • M-Pesa customers can deposit and withdraw money from a network of agents that includes airtime resellers and retail outlets acting as banking agents. The service enables its users to deposit and withdraw money, transfer money to other users and non-users, pay bills, purchase airtime and transfer money between the service and, in some markets like Kenya, a bank account.
  • M-Pesa, was launched in India as a close partnership with HDFC bank in November 2011. Development for the bank began as early as 2008. The service continues to operate in a limited geographical area in India. Vodafone India had partnered with both HDFC and ICICI bank, ICICI launched M-Pesa on 18 April 2013.
  • Vodafone has incorporated a subsidiary with M-Pesa named VODAFONE M-PESA LIMITED. Vodafone plans to rollout this service throughout India. The user needs to register for this service by paying 200 Rupees and there are charges levied per M-Pesa transaction.

BLU-RAY DISC (BD)

  • Blu-ray Disc (BD) is an optical disc storage medium designed to supersede the DVD format. The plastic disc is 120 mm in diameter and 1.2 mm thick, the same size as DVDs and CDs.
  • Conventional Blu-ray Discs contain 25 GB per layer, with dual layer discs (50 GB) being the industry standard for feature-length video discs. Triple layer discs (100 GB) and quadruple layers (128 GB) are available for BD-XL re-writer drives.
  • The major application of Blu-ray Discs is as a medium for video material such as feature films. Besides the hardware specifications, Blu-ray Disc is associated with a set of multimedia formats.
  • Generally these formats allow for the video and audio to be stored with greater definition than on DVD.
  • The name Blu-ray Disc refers to the blue laser used to read the disc, which allows information to be stored at a greater density than is possible with the longer-wavelength red laser used for DVDs.

DVD | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • DVD is an optical disc storage format, invented and developed by Philips, Sony, Toshiba, and Panasonic in 1995. DVDs offer higher storage cap3city than Compact Discs while having the same dimensions.
  • Pre-recorded DVDs are mass-produced using moulding machines that physically stamp data onto the DVD. Such discs are known as DVD-ROM, because data can only be read and not written nor erased.
  • Blank recordable DVD discs (DVD-R and DVD+R) can be recorded once using a DVD recorder and then function as a DVD-ROM. Rewritable DVDs (DVD-RW, DVD+RW, and DVD-RAM) can be recorded and erased multiple times.

COMPACT DISC (CD)

  • The Compact Disc (CD) is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was original developed to store and play back sound recordings only, but the format was late adapted for storage of data (CD-ROM), write-once audio and data storage (CD-R rewritable media (CD-RW), Video Compact Discs (VCD), Super Video Compact Discs (SVCD), PhotoCD, PictureCD, CD-i, and Enhanced CD.
  • Standard CDs have a diameter of 120 millimetres (4.7 in) and can hold up to 8C minutes of uncompressed audio or 700 MB (700 x 220 bytes) of data.
  • The Mini CD has various diameters ranging from 60 to 80 millimetres (2.4 to 3.1 in); they are sometimes used for CD singles, storing up to 24 minutes of audio or delivering device drivers.

LCD, LED AND PLASMA TV

  • For many years, the CRT (Cathode ray tube) technology was the dominant technology in television sets.
  • However, in the past few years, there has been a significant improvement in the technology, which has seen the introduction of LCD, plasma and LED televisions. LCD, LED and plasma TVs have to upscale and deinterlace television pictures, and instead of scanning them directly onto the screen like a CRT television, they store pictures and place them onto the TV screen a frame at a time.
  • Each of these new technologies has its strong points in the method that it displays images, among other features. The features for each type of these technologies are as below.

LIQUID CRYSTAL DISPLAY (LCD) TV

  • LCD was created to replace the CRT technology. A LCD TV is a significant improvement in the way pictures are displayed due to the mode of display involved.
  • LCD technology uses two major components to display, namely; Cold Cathode Florescent Lamps or CCFLs and molecules of liquid crystals.
  • The CCFLs are used to illuminate the liquid molecules with white light, and as the light passes through, an image is created.
  • A LCD TV has the following advantages over a CRT TV; flat and much lighter, a higher resolution, wider viewing angle of up to 175 degrees, lower power consumption, resistant to ‘burn in’ due to static images, and are ideal for naturally lit environments.
  • However, there are some disadvantages to this technology such as a low contrast ratio and inability to achieve true black picture quality.

PLASMA TV | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • The shortcomings of LCD TV led to the development of Plasma Display Panel, otherwise known as a plasma TV. With this technology, images are created from gases containing neon and xenon atoms.
  • Plasma TV technology boasts of a rich variation of colours, due to an advanced colour generation feature, that is able to generate true black picture quality.
  • The viewing distance and angles are also wider, ranging from 160 and up to 180 degrees, which is more than what can be achieved with a LCD TV. A plasma TV also has a higher lifespan than LCD TV.
  • The downside of this technology is that the viewing capability, especially the brightness is greatly diminished in poor lighting conditions, lower resolution, and an irreparable back light.

LIGHT EMITTING DIODE (LED) TV

  • A more advanced technology in television display is the LED TV. This is basically an advanced model of a LCD TV, which uses Light Emitting Diodes instead of the traditional Cold Cathode Florescent Lamps for its back light.
  • The major advantage of using an LED TV is that it eliminated the numerous black spots that were as a result of using fluorescent lights. A LED TV has the best colour levels and contrast ratio, hence superb picture quality that is viewable from wider angles; its power consumption is significantly lower, is shock resistant and longer lasting than its predecessors.
  • The only shortcoming to a LED TV is that it is more expensive than a LCD TV and a plasma TV.

OLED | NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

  • An OLED (organic light-emitting diode) is a light-emitting diode (LED) in which the emissive electroluminescent layer is a film of organic compound which emits light in response to an electric current.
  • This layer of organic semiconductor is situated between two electrodes. Generally, at least one of these electrodes is transparent. OLEDs are used to create digital displays in devices such as television screens, computer monitors, portable systems such as mobile phones, handheld games consoles and PDAs.
  • A major area of research is the development of white OLED devices for use in solid-state lighting applications.
  • There are two main families of OLED: those based on small molecules and those employing polymers. Adding mobile ions to an OLED creates a light-emitting electrochemical cell or LEO, which has a slightly different mode of operation. OLED displays can use either passive-matrix (PMOLED) or active-matrix addressing schemes.
  • Active-matrix OLEDs (AMOLED) require a thin-film transistor backplane to switch each individual pixel on or off, but allow for higher resolution and larger display sizes.
  • An OLED display works without a backlight. Thus, it can display deep black levels and can be thinner and lighter than a liquid crystal display (LCD).
  • In low ambient light conditions such as a dark room an OLED screen can achieve a higher contrast ratio than an LCD, whether the LCD uses cold cathode fluorescent lamps or LED backlight. NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION (NFC)

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

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