What is Touchless Smart Signage?
Touchless smart signage essentially describes signage that incorporates technology to deliver an experience to an end-user. This kind of signage utilizes not only QR codes but also NFC chips to transmit these messages. Touchless smart signage allows customers to receive messages directly to their electronic device instantly whether to inform them or to immerse them into an experience. This idea of augmented reality and immersive experiences began in the 90’s, however, with technology being so advanced, we are able to carry these around in our pockets making them a newer trend.
What are QR Codes?
QR codes or Quick Response codes look like barcodes that are made up of smaller square shapes to create one larger code. These are 2D images that are typically printed on a sign to be scanned directly using a smartphone. Most modern phones don’t require a QR app to translate the code, however, older phones may require a free app to read it. These QR codes when scanned will then take the user directly to a website link. These are increasingly becoming popular during the time of COVID where restaurants are moving toward digital menus that require no touch. This type of signage can really help to grow your online presence and also broaden your digital marketing potential.
What are NFC chips?
NFC chips or Near Field Communication chips use Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) which uses print and technology to create a digital experience for an audience. The NFC chips look like small decal “chips” that can be applied to any surface. Then, we can print any sign such as a wall mural or window graphic and apply that directly over the chip to hide it. The NFC chip will then be disguised but still usable. For example, in a museum you can put an NFC chip under a grand wall mural that direct people to scan the chip with their phone and it will digitally take them on a journey that coincides with the exhibit. Most smartphones have NFC chip readers in them, however, older versions may not be able to read this.
NFC chips are also fully customizable. You can program the chip to take the end user to any website link. If you have a chip already installed behind a huge graphic, don’t worry. You don’t need to replace the entire graphic. Simply reprogram the start chip using your phone to direct them to a new place. Unfortunately, this isn’t the same for QR codes. If you want to direct people to a new website link, you’ll need to reprint a whole new QR code.
NFC and RFID
NFC uses RFID technology which includes Bluetooth and WIFI technology. RFID however is most commonly used by retailers and larger corporations to track their inventory. For example, security guards or buildings with a strict protocol will require nametags to be scanned to enter the building. These security stations use RFID in their nametag scanning technology to know who is entering the building. RFID is also used in the implant chips that we often see in our pets.
NFC is most commonly seen in payment technology such as apply pay, google pay, etc. It is secure and requires authentication that will prevent the company from losing the sale after. NFC also enables you to still communicate with the customer after the transaction.
Touchless technology has been on the rise with the evolution of technology itself. However, with the pandemic around, we’re seeing the constant need for more touchless surfaces. NFC technology is the perfect solution. If you’re ready to get started with your touchless smart signage project, give us a call at 510.974.7369 or request a quote here.