Sony, LG embrace NFC for entertainment and appliances at CES 2013

SonyNFC Speakers

At this years CES, in Las Vegas, Sony unveiled a range of NFC based consumer products that weren’t just based on mobile handsets. Instead, the company has used NFC technology for its ability to pair devices.

Sony has a large range of NFC-enabled devices with built-in One-touch functions, including a Blu-ray disc home theatre system, sound bar, wireless speakers (including the cute looking SRS-BT5 portable speakers with NFC on-board – see photograph) and other home audio products; headphones, portable speakers and mobile devices and a specialized remote control for select Sony Bravia televisions (more on that later). Basically anything for the audiophile. This shouldn’t come as a surprise to readers of Contactless Intelligence as we’ve reported in the past on Sony’s use of NFC technology within their Xperia mobiles to share music and putting NFC at the heart of content sharing through its ‘One-touch’ function, taking NFC beyond the traditional uses such as ticketing and payments. Sony’s new Personal Content Station is a 1TB device that consumers can use to manage precious memories with One-touch function. It can connect wirelessly to a home network to store, view, and share photos and videos from smartphones and tablets such as Sony’s Xperia models.

One-touch function is also connecting smartphones with select Sony Bravia TVs, which is pretty cool, but we liked best their NFC-inspired innovation, ‘SideView’, which lets you mirror a handheld screen on your TV by tapping on the remote control. Unlike the approach from Samsung and LG, the NFC chip is in the remote instead of the TV. NFC-enabled phones can pair up with Sony’s Bravia TVs and Blu-ray disc home theatre system, and be mirrored on the bigger screen (photos, videos, games or apps). The SideView app is available free for both Android and iOS, and works both ways – users can browse schedules, record shows and explore related content to what’s on TV, without interrupting what’s on.

And NFC technology didn’t stay in the realm of entertainment. Same as last year, LG have also used NFC in their range of smart appliances, including ovens, refrigerators, washing machines and so on that all communicate with each other. Sounds cool and a little scary at the same time, right? Here’s a good overview of their available appliances today from their 2012 release. The interesting news is that instead of crashing your in-home WiFi, LG uses NFC technology to allow these machines to communicate with each other (probably as they plot how to run your life). LG envisions your NFC enabled smart phone as the ultimate remote control for the smart home.

All-in-all, it’s nice to see NFC leaving the realm of ticketing and payment and manufacturers adopting the technology for what it’s really there for – near field communication. And if the Sony NFC remote takes off there’s always a chance that the iOS community will soon have an app available called ‘Find Remote’ – now that’s app that would be welcomed with open arms in our house!

 

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Categories: Near Field Communications, Other

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