How will NFC affect online shopping?
Online shopping has grown significantly in recent years, as consumers show more of an inclination to make purchases from their computers rather than brave the crowds at the mall. These trends will likely accelerate in the coming years with the incorporation of near-field communication (NFC) technology in everyday computing devices.
Near-field communication describes a technology that allows users to make transactions or exchange data by tapping an NFC-enabled device or card to a system that automatically reads the card's information. Today, it is often seen in identification cards to control access to facilities or in payment cards to conduct faster transactions in stores.
But the technology is increasingly being incorporated into devices like laptop and tablet computers and smartphones, which could have significant implications for online shoppers. If consumers are able to tap their payment cards to a computer's body, it may expedite the transaction process by eliminating the need to enter information on an e-vendor's website.
This may also increase the security of online transactions, as the credit or debit card data could go directly to the payment processing company and wouldn't have to be stored on the vendor's website.
Intel® and MasterCard® have announced they are collaborating to outfit future Ultrabook™ computers with NFC technology. If successful, tap-and-pay processes may become more common in other mobile devices as well.