Friday, October 21, 2011

Google Maps adds NFC support

The updated Google Maps apps requests access to a new permission called, "Control NFC," which “Allows an application to communicate with Near Field Communication (NFC) tags, cards, and readers. The Galaxy Nexus and Beam will be able to share Google Maps information via NFC, that is, when your phone gets Beam or some other NFC type of app that can utilize this permission. Beam is a new feature in Ice Cream Sandwich that allows you to share information between phonesby simply placing the phones together and taping on the screen. This sharing of information is possible thanks to NFC.
This is a nice synergy and alignment with Google Offers. Google and some of its retail partners have rolled out an updated experience to Google Wallet payment-by-phone system that now includes coupons and rewards points, which can all be redeemed with a single tap of the user's NFC-enabled smartphone. In the "Offers" tab in the Google Wallet app, there are deals exclusive to users of the wireless payment service, and whenever a user scans his Google Wallet wireless device, these deals are automatically activated whether or not he's actually checked them out in the tab.