Recently Microsoft revealed a Near Field Communication like technology, called Dhwani. Now Brazil based Kinetics has developed a similar technology, called NearBytes. It has already made a few applications and has even issued a software development kit for global developers to integrate in their applications and systems.
NearBytes utilizes short sound codes that the applications generate and decode for data exchange. Hence any smartphone can use this technology as they do not need any special or dedicated hardware that is otherwise necessary in case of NFC such as NFC tags and NFC Sensors.
Out of the many applications that the NearBytes developers have been able to make there are two noted applications – called The candle and BizzBuzz – which are available for Android as well as iOS devices. Both these applications allow devices to communicate with each other without using special hardware. While ‘the Candle’ allows devices to share flame, a form of hello, the BizzBuzz offer more complex data transfer between devices including exchange of professional as well as personal information.
The system relies on sound waves that are emitted by the phone. The initial connection can be initiated by sending a short sound code to the devices and following that, connectivity medium like Bluetooth can be used for exchange fop data without the need of user’s intervention. All of this happens over an encrypted connection making it impervious to breach or leak of data.
Unlike NFC, the sound wave system does not require similar devices or even a same category of devices to initiate a connection. For instance the Flame application is perfectly capable with a smartphone sending out a signal to a tablet and vice verse. The technology has got potential, the only hurdle in between is that the manufacturers and technology enablers stepping in and adopting it’s as an alternative to NFC.