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Tagstand Offers NFC Solution for Small Deployments

The company sells small quantities of RFID stickers, and provides a free hosted application that is being used by businesses and hobbyists to inexpensively link an NFC tag to a Web site, or to such data as business card or product information.
By Claire Swedberg
May 03, 2012Several years ago, a San Francisco company called Tagstand was launched with a single purpose, according to Kulveer Taggar, one of the firm's founders and its CEO: to sell Near Field Communication (NFC) RFID stickers. Taggar, along with his fellow cofounders, had noticed that anyone looking to buy just a few NFC tags in order to begin developing their own NFC-based systems would have few options. Typically, he says, NFC tags are sold in high volume.

"We set ourselves up as an NFC tag store," Taggar states. However, once Tagstand began selling its tags to small companies and entrepreneurs, it saw a demand for an end-to-end service. Customers were not only seeking to buy tags, he says, but also asking for solutions. With the arrival of Google's Nexus S NFC-enabled phone, interest increased further. In response, Tagstand developed Tagstand Manager, a hosted application that customers could access via a Web interface.

At IPG Media Lab, clients use an NFC-enabled mobile phone to identify the demonstrations that interest them most.

Tagstand Manager was developed to allow businesses to experiment with ways in which they could employ NFC RFID technology without making major financial commitments, such as purchasing software or large volumes of tags. Instead, Taggar says, a handful of NFC stickers and access to the Tagstand Manager server are sufficient.

One of Tagstand's customers is IPG Media Lab, a digital media firm based in New York City. Since October 2011, IPG Media Lab has been offering its clients NFC RFID technology that they could utilize for a variety of custom applications related to sharing product data with customers. The company also uses NFC within its showroom, to measure the interest generated by each of its digital displays, which illustrate the firm's latest solutions for the transfer and display of media content.

Tagstand's Kulveer Taggar
Tagstand Manager enables developers to program and manage their NFC tags as they choose, over the Internet—thus far, at no charge. Users can simply log onto the site, provide tag ID numbers and write instructions for those tags—either to forward NFC tag IDs to Web sites, or to link them to messages, coupons, business cards or other data. When a user taps an NFC-enabled phone against a tag, the phone transmits that tag's ID number to the Tagstand Manager server, which provides an instruction, such as a Web site URL for the user to visit. That URL would then be displayed on the individual's phone.

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