"NFC is enabling anytime/anywhere purchases. With RFA, we're making those purchases even more valuable," said Paul Atkinson, president and CEO of Kestrel Wireless. "The same technology that allows manufacturers and retailers to activate and authenticate products can be used as a tool to turn physical goods into tickets for virtual benefits. From digital bundles (like movie DVD and soundtrack download) to virtual coupons, consumers will interact with their products in new and beneficial ways while manufacturers and retailers create new and unique relationships with customers."
NFC is a wireless connectivity technology that enables short-range communication between electronic devices. When two NFC-compatible devices are within approximately four centimeters of each other, they are able to establish a connection and transmit information back and forth. Current applications are primarily for use with mobile phones and include electronic keys, electronic wallets and e-tickets. Kestrel?s RFA technology works on top of NFC and makes possible product activation and authentication services. With activation, products are disabled at the point of manufacture and enabled only at the point-of-sale when certain criteria (such as payment) have been met. Product authentication ensures the product purchased is factory-original (not counterfeit or pirated) and purchased from a legitimate retailer. Together, these two services provide manufacturers and retailers with multiple benefits including theft prevention, reduction in packaging and increased distribution options. And when used with NFC/RFA-enabled mobile phones, new consignment opportunities arise such as on-demand activation of ink jet cartridges and DVDs.
The demonstration simulated a potential movie-goer/movie-buyer process in the not-too-distant future. While the demonstration showcased its application to DVDs, the companies stress that this technology can be used across all forms of consumer electronics, optical media and items such as ink jet cartridges and smart cards.