New warranty NFC tag hits the market
Posted by Seth PlanckJune 02nd, 2011 at 7:39 PM Filed Under Latest News
Warranty NFC tags take the first step toward allowing us to manage our personal business assets.
Indian company, United Tectsa, has introduced a new type of NFC tag to the marketplace that holds product and warranty details. The NFC tag stores serial numbers, product codes, batch numbers and manufacture dates. These details are then protected at the point of manufacture, but leave a portion of the NFC tag writable to add dealer / retailer specific details such as their dealer code, invoice or bill number and date of purchase. The NFC tag is then locked to be un-writable by the dealer / retailer who sells the product. United Tectsa envisions the tag being used to replace warranty /guarantee paperwork and to streamline the process of making or tracking a claim. At this point what we do know is that United Tecsta has an accompanying management software.
How the Warranty NFC tag works
When scanned, the NFC tag provokes the NFC-enabled phone to send out an SMS to the manufacturer to check warranty eligibility and to log the scan in a database. The idea is that the manufacturer’s database would then SMS back to the phone that has scanned the NFC tag in question confirming or denying warranty status. There are still a few lingering unknown questions around these tags. We still do not know what type the NFC tag type is (1-4 NFC Forum approved tag types), or what code will pass instructions and data via SMS, or what mobile operating systems the tags are intended for.
Designed to be housed within a purchased item that comes with a warranty, this NFC tag solution starts to open the doors to bigger developments for the products we own. The benefits of United Tecsta’s system has value for both a customer not having to hunt for or produce warranty details and would also allow manufacturers or retailers to track claims by product type or by individual customer. Problems with a line of products could then be spotted early and a manufacturer could take steps to recall or replace products.
NFC tags can do more in the products we own
Our thoughts on this particular NFC tag warranty solution is that we find this product invaluable for the second hand marketplace, and as the company points out in relegating the need for warranty paperwork to the category marked extinct. It takes the first step in managing products we buy and own, but does not fully integrate the customer experience with the manufacturer’s brand. Instead of giving the customer the power of interactions with the product’s brand, it passes that ability onto a third party. Opportunities for extra sales will be missed and the system does not address the modern need for brands to promote relationships and loyalty from customers. What it misses is the opportunity to up-sell to a newer product, the ability to engage on a social media level or to provide support information for fixes or firmware updates a customer could do themselves. If apps were created specifically for brands, a customer could also store information dragged down from a database such as usage instructions and product features sell-sheets with mobile commerce features to order new products.
We would love to know if the company provides access to an SDK to integrate with their tags management software for manufacturers. Also of interest is whether there is the option to use web-based data instead of an SMS system. NFC tags represent opportunities for every product we come in contract with, we can’t wait to see where it goes next.