How has NFC revolutionized the locking industry?

The abbreviation – NFC – has been around for over a decade. But, do you know what it stands for and what impact it can have on your daily life?

NFC stands for near-field communication. In a nutshell, it refers to a system that enables two electronic devices (one of which is usually a portable device such as a smartphone) to communicate with each other when they are close together – usually within 4 cm of each other.

Let’s take a look at how NFC evolved. It has its roots in radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology. RFID uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify and track tags attached to objects. Frequently used applications are, for example, in automobile production to track a car’s progress through the assembly line, or to track the location of pharmaceuticals in a warehouse. RFID microchips have even been implanted into livestock and pets for identification purposes.

NFC was approved as an ISO/IEC standard in 2003, and its use has been rapidly gathering speed since then. In 2014, Apple introduced Apple Pay for NFC-enabled mobile payment on their iPhones. And, in 2015, Google’s Android Pay function was launched as a direct rival for use with Android phones.

Digital revolution in the utilities industry

A functioning and reliable utilities industry is essential to ensure modern society runs smoothly. However, utility providers regularly face the challenge of simultaneously managing numerous sites and vast numbers of personnel. This has traditionally meant that a huge number of locks need to be maintained, and keys are in constant circulation. In 2016, we introduced the iLOQ S50 – a fully digital locking solution designed specifically for the needs of the utilities industry.

A smartphone and convenient mobile APP are the keys to the success of the iLOQ S50. An NFC-enabled smartphone replaces the traditional key. Access rights to all property locks can be easily shared and managed using the iLOQ S50 mobile APP. The cloud-based, secure software program consolidates multiple sites into one user-friendly platform. Combining security with efficient over-the-air access management, iLOQ S50 simplifies the operating logistics and reduces the costs associated with mechanical and battery-powered electronic locks.

Security risks related to physical keys are also eliminated by using the iLOQ S50 solution. The system helps keep track of who has access to what with features like time-restricted access, instant granting and revoking of access rights and real-time audit trail reports.

Your phone – a power source

iLOQ S50 utilizes NFC technology to the fullest. It is the world’s first self-powered NFC-powered lock cylinder that generates the energy it needs for unlocking from a smartphone held next to it. It’s quick, easy and, as no batteries are required, it’s also a cost-effective, maintenance-free and environmentally friendly solution. This true wireless energy transformation is a unique benefit and a strong point of differentiation from Bluetooth-powered locking solutions which require batteries or a wired-in power supply.

By taking out the hassle and difficulty related to physical keys, iLOQ has created a mobile access management solution that saves utilities, such as power production and distribution companies, telecom network services, data centers and water treatment plants, valuable time, money and resources. This leaves them free to focus their resources on core business development, and providing a continuous, reliable service.

To find out more about iLOQ S50 and iLOQ’s full range of access management solutions, visit our website. Or, get in touch with us or use the comments box below to let us know what challenges you are facing and how we can help you overcome them.