Today, we’re going to talk about NFC car mounts. NFC is an acronym for Near Field Communication. NFC technology allows smartphones and tablets communicate with other devices containing an NFC tag. An NFC tag looks like a round or square adhesive disk with a small circuit board embedded into it. You might be using this technology without even knowing it. For example, you know the bump thing that’s done between smartphones to swap contact information and photos? That’s NFC.
NFC has been aggressively embraced by Google with their Android operating system and supporting hardware vendors. They have recently purchased the Bump application to make it their own. Notice I didn’t mention Apple? That’s because, to reasons I can’t understand, Apple only supports Near Field Communication for Apple Pay. Nothing else. It’s too bad because there are a lot of advantages currently available and planned for the future that would be nice to have.
Each tag has an action associated with the recognition of the presence of the tag. Some are pre-programmed into an app. Other actions can be custom programmed by you, the device owner. That’s where NFC car mounts come into play. Paired with an app such as Tasker or Trigger, you can program tasks to occur based upon presence of a particular NFC signal. For example, turn on Bluetooth when the phone is placed into the mount or start an app when your tablet comes in contact with the holder.
I have found that the phone must be in close contact with the tag to work properly. Near Field Communication means really near. Like touching the phone with the tag.
Let’s look at some NFC car mounts. We will also look at how to make NFC car mounts which is a lot easier than you might think.
There are NFC car mounts that pair an NFC chip with the holder and are complete with instructions on how to get started. The Intelligrip Programmable NFC-Powered Car Mount includes everything you need to get started. A mount, NFC chip and micro USB charger are included. The mount can be used on the windshield or dash and fits most smartphones including the Samsung Galaxy S7, Note 5 and other similarly sized phones. The included cradle also fits many small tablets like the Samsung Tab3 7.0. The holder opens to 7 inches and will swivel into portrait or landscape mode and can pivot from side to side.
The iBOLT xProDock Connect Kit is a similar mount to the previously mentioned Intelligrip. This one comes with a heavier duty cradle. This mounting kit also comes with the holder, NFC chip and charging cable. The mount is a little longer than the Intelligrip. The cradle cups the device a little more securely as well.
If you have a mount that you really like, you don’t need to buy a new one to activate Near Field Communication. Add a WhizTags PVC NFC Tags with 3M Adhesive Backing Pack of 10 to your mount’s cradle. These re-writable tags can be synced with your smartphone running an Android O/S to then work in tandem with one of the apps we mentioned to automate some of your recursive phone tasks such as turning on Bluetooth.
The availability of these tags means that you can pair a great tablet mount such as the Arkon Car or Truck Seat Rail or Floor Tablet Mount with 22 inch Arm. Just stick the tag onto the front of the cradle and you have created an NFC car mount. This is one of my favorite mounts for tablets. The cradle is spring-loaded and opens wide enough for almost any tablet. The 22″ arm is large enough for an SUV and attaches to your seat bolt in five minutes. Just be sure to use a wrench or pliers to tighten the bolt after installation for a steady hold.
Near Field Communication is great technology. My go-to phone is an Apple iPhone 6s Plus these days. I’m disappointed that Apple has yet to embrace this technology except for their Apple Pay system which I never use. It would be nice to have Bluetooth always enabled and sucking up my battery. Android users can continue to rejoice in a great reason to own their phone versus an iPhone.
For more information on how this technology works, be sure to read our detailed article on NFC.