What if you missed your morning breakfast in a haste to attend an emergency meeting? You thought of ordering something on the move. Maybe call up a Pizza guy or order some special delight from the nearest Subway outlet...

The possibilities are endless. At first, you thought of taking a parcel from the nearby Pizza outlet, but then you are already getting late. So what do you do?

Fret not! NFC and GPS are here to make your task simpler by getting things done at your fingertips.

What is NFC and How Does it Affect Your Life?

NFC simply stands for Near Field Communication, which in other words translates to short-range wireless connectivity. Its range is limited to 1.5-inch and is based on RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology.

It works similar to the Bluetooth technology with the exception of physical touch oriented communication and without the pairing process. That means no clutter of cables and user-friendly access to any NFC-based device.

As of now, there are Bluetooth-based GPS receivers and very soon there might be NFC chip-based GPS receivers on the navigation devices.

Heard of technology reinventing itself and multipurpose gadgets revolutionizing your lifestyle?

We are not far from realizing those elusive dreams amidst our restless daily chores.

You could call up the Pizza guy or the Subway waiter and ask him to get the package to the office, while you sit at the comfort of the wheels and pay the bill in advance. All of it is possible if an NFC (Near Field Communication) device could be incorporated within the confines of your car.

Still better, if we have a GPS navigator device with NFC chip embedded to it. You may choose to order from the nearest outlet within the vicinity of your workplace or the meeting location and get the parcel delivered wherever you wish.

It would be a cashless purchase on food items, beverages, clothes, petrol and a lot more. You would just have to recharge the currency once a month depending on your needs and expenses. Just like you might be accustomed to use a smart card for a safe and convenient travel experience.

The NFC could become your safe key for storing your personal profile and sharing it with friends online, using apps like 'Friendticker'. You may also store your medical case information and carry it on NFC tags for a regular health checkup. What's more? You could even play a co-operative video game with another NFC user within your vicinity, by just getting your NFC device in contact with his device.

The retailers, bankers will clearly know the details of everyday transaction as the information pops out on their terminal. As a consumer, you could crave for efficient and timely service, safe and quick digital transactions and above all convenience at your fingertips.

What is GPS and How Does it Affect Your Life?

GPS simply stands for Global Positioning System that helps transmit location co-ordinates through the satellite and aid in navigation.

When was the last time you had lost your way in a new city, while returning home? Or did you ever think about saving the shortest route to your office on a map for future use and faster commuting?

You could definitely overcome such challenges using a GPS navigator device with embedded GPS receiver and navigation software pre-installed. Imagine, if you were in a hurry to finish shopping for your family, before taking off a flight to an emergency meeting in a far off location. You wouldn't want to search for locations manually and end up missing an important meeting! It's time to embrace GPS navigation tools like TomTom, which can be deck mounted in your car and you don't have to carry it around.

Besides, GPS navigation facility is also available on the smartphones, pocket PCs and PDAs. You can call it the era of revolutionary technology that is rapidly changing the face of the world and so our lifestyles as well.

NFC as an Alternative to GPS?

Unlike GPS, NFC can transmit location co-ordinates from the transponder to a phone without the use of a satellite. On the downside, its range is limited to a short distance. So, its application is limited to underground subways, indoor shopping malls, conference centers and canyons where the satellite signals are jammed or reception is not possible. Alternatively, it could be a handy tool for military use where satellite communications are jammed or disrupted by enemy signal jammers.

Importance of NFC

Mobile phone ticketing solution and SmartPoster tags are the latest developments in the field of NFC, which enable cashless transactions across shopping malls, ticketless travel and a perfect substitute for today's credit cards. NFC could become an integral part of our lives, just as computers, gadgets and machines have changed our lifestyles.

Evolution of Navigators and NFC

The evolution of navigation concept dates back to the medieval and prehistoric period when sailors and explorers valiantly circumvented the nooks of the uncharted world. The prehistoric days saw the use of compass, sextant and a chronometer.

The compass aided in determining the position relative to the north and south poles of the Earth while sextant helped in celestial navigation using the angular measurements between the horizon and the common celestial object of reference like a navigational star, Sun or the Moon.

Finally, the chronometer assisted in measuring the exact time. So, what does navigation literally mean? Navigation is the science of determining the position and direction on or above the surface of the Earth.

Manual maps took birth in the era of pirates and sailors. They gradually gave way to the digital maps that could be stored on a device. These maps coupled with a GPS (Global Positioning System)-based software like TomTom could guide the user through the pre-defined route using the Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems.

The quintessential GPS devices used a non-mapping system, wherein user could manually jot down the route by joining the adjacent co-ordinates represented as dots on the screen.

These dots were displayed on the LCD screen and the system would calculate the direction of travel based on comparison with subsequent positions projected over a distance in the moving direction.

This feature also allowed users to mark and save waypoints for further use in navigation. The abstract nature of this feature, forced the need for a proper map based GPS system with street names, landmarks and buildings clearly marked on it.

NFC and Navigators in Future Car Technology

We are looking at the future car technology and the positive waves so far will only catapult the revolutionary tech-gadgets to dizzying heights of glory. Being a potential game changer, the NFC holds the uncompromising support from the likes of Nokia, Sony and Royal Philips Electronics ever since their founding of the NFC forum way back in 2004.

Meanwhile, Samsung, Motorola and Microsoft have joined hands in pursuit of nurturing and promoting such a revolutionary technology. We could only hope that the elusive dream will come true.