Not all phones can read a radio frequency identification tag. The handset must have a built-in Near Field Communication (NFC) device for this to be possible.
NFC, a high-frequency (HF) RFID technology developed by Nokia, Philips (now NXP Semiconductors) and Sony, incorporated existing standards, including ISO 14443, into a single protocol, and also added some other unique features, such as the ability for a reader to emulate a tag.
That enables a person to download, for example, a movie ticket or a bus ticket to his or her phone, and to then swipe that phone by an NFC-enabled turnstile. A growing number of phones are currently being equipped with NFC readers, but it will be several years before all models have that capability.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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