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GoToTags Updates its NFC Tag Encoder Software and Hardware with v3.11 Release

We are excited to announce a major new release of our NFC tag encoding software plus a new version of our Reel-Reel NFC encoding hardware. This release will also coincide with the transition to a completely new subscription pricing model offering our customers a choice of several plans to suit their needs.

This is great news for our existing and new customers as the functionality of the encoding software is greatly improved and the new subscription pricing model allows us to offer lower per tag prices and provide better service.

The NFC Encoder software is commercial grade Windows software to encode and verify NFC tags and barcodes. The v3.11 software release includes many major changes including:

  • Support for Windows 10 and high-dpi monitors
  • Switch to use new GoToTags .NET SDK for barcode and hardware control
  • An updated and cleaner UI
  • Multiple minor bug fixes and performance improvements

The newly designed NFC Reel-Reel Encoder hardware has been optimized for high-speed NFC tag encoding and includes:

  • A more functional design that can meet industrial scale workflows
  • Support for additional sensors via a new highly adjustable sensor rail mounting system
  • Support for new Leuze tag counters including both optical and ultrasonic tag counters
  • The ability to detect and count a wider range of NFC tags and NFC inlays, both clear and opaque faced
  • An improved power supply

We analyzed our existing customer preferences and usage data and are pleased to announce the new pricing model will offer lower per-tag costs to customers that utilize the software. It is a major revision of the outdated 4-year-old pricing model, which was purely usage based depending on the number of tags encoded during each billing period. The new model offers our customers a choice of several plans with features suited to all levels of usage.

Customers will be able to pause or resume their subscriptions as well as upgrade or downgrade their plan at any time with pro-rated charges. Existing plans will be available until July 1st, 2017 when previous versions of the Encoder will need updating to the new version and customers will need to subscribe to one of our new plans. The reason the existing plans will no longer be supported is that supporting older generations of plans side by side affects our ability to operate a modern and efficient product and we know we have created a range of plans to suit the encoding needs of all our customers.

For those customers just getting started with NFC and only need to work with a few NFC tags, the GoToTags Windows App is software for you; plus its free!

The new range of plans allows us to tailor the product to better fit the scale of different customer operations and we are confident the new model allows improved service and a better version of NFC Encoder that you’ll love. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

 

Cooper Hewitt Engages Museum Visitors using NFC Inlays

When visitors enter the museum they are given an NFC-enabled stylus pen (“the Pen”) to carry with them throughout their visit. As visitors wander through exhibits they encounter wall labels with NFC inlays affixed near objects such as lighting fixtures, furniture, wallpaper or decorative pieces. By tapping these tags with the pen, the reader stores the unique tag ID which is associated with the work. Fourteen high definition tables and screens are scattered throughout the museum. The largest tables allow up to six users to simultaneously explore high resolution images of collection objects including those saved with the pen; select items from the “object river” that flows down the center of each table; zoom in on object details and learn about related objects organized by design theme and motif. They can also draw a shape that will bring up a related collection object, or try their hand at drawing simple three-dimensional forms.

After users save their finished designs, they can access their objects later using the unique URL provided on the pen and post them on social media. Using the pens, smart tables and NFC tags gives museum visitors the opportunity to learn about design by becoming designers!

With inlays purchased from GoToTags, Cooper Hewitt has demonstrated a creative way to engage users with NFC. This high tech museum adds interest and engagement for museum visitors allowing each individual to create an experience that is all their own! Due to the tap to interact nature of NFC tags, NFC products are an ideal way to increase interaction and engagement among customers. As more and more people and industries become aware of NFC we can expect to see more interactive exhibits, shopping experiences and educational tools.

 

Khushi Baby uses NFC Tags to Increase Medical Care in India

In India, it is traditional for babies to wear black thread necklaces as good luck charms for health and good fortune. Now Khushi Baby, an organization hoping to help resolve vaccination issues is using similar necklaces combined with NFC technology to revolutionize medical care for children.

Families in rural India face several problems regarding childhood vaccination. At the root many parents remain uneducated on the importance of vaccines for their children. When parents do not realize the importance of vaccines they do not prioritize visiting traveling health camps or do not fully understand that many vaccines require multiple rounds of shots for optimal effectiveness. Health care workers working at mobile health camps do not have proper medical records for children. The lack of medical history and data makes it difficult for doctors to stock up on necessary vaccines and almost impossible to ensure that children receive the necessary doses. In part, due to the unreliable medical history data India has one of the lowest vaccination rates in the world.

Khushi Baby reached out to GoToTags seeking NFC tags to act as necklace pendants rather than a key chain. Khushi Baby wanted a smaller pendant than the standard key fob and GoToTags helped find just the right size. Though it is standard for NFC key fobs to come on a metal ring, GoToTags assembled the NFC key fobs on thread necklaces with client-specified knots so that the fobs were ready for distribution as NFC pendants as soon as they arrived in India.

Now when children arrive to receive their immunizations health workers scan the NFC key fobs using the Khushi Baby mobile app to access vaccine information. After children are vaccinated the patient records are updated and synced online to a cloud based service.

The system not only creates an easy to use system for data storage but eases communication between health providers and families helping to raise vaccination awareness in rural communities. The system automatically calls mothers several days before the arrival of a vaccine camp and educates them about the importance of vaccinating their children. The seamless data storage solution utilizing NFC tags is helping solve a real world issue from the ground up!

GoToTags Judges Intel’s Seattle IoT Hackathon at UW Startup Hall

GoToTags was privileged to take part in the first stop for the 2015 Intel IoT Roadshow series. This was a great opportunity for Seattle area professionals, students, and developers to take part in the next technological revolution; the Internet of Things. Ramsey Brown, who focuses on developing relationships with customers and partners at GoToTags, was a judge at the event in order to help share his expertise with NFC and IoT.

Attendees were given the chance to train and work with Intel’s® Edison™ Development Kits which were specifically designed for emerging entrepreneurs and developers looking to drive the future of wireless sensors and technologies such as NFC tags and BLE (Bluetooth low energy). After Developer Kit training, attendees could take part in a hackathon to showcase their creativity and developer skills. After two days of intense hacking, 24 teams presented their demos to the judges. Ideas ranged from an IoT clock that performs basic tasks, a social media connected smart ornament, a wearable safety device that detects falling emergencies, and the event’s prize-winning idea of a wearable that uses biometric assessments and dynamics to generate and stream music.

 

Dauntless Software Traces Legal Marijuana with NFC

With the simple use of a durable, weatherproof NFC tag and the GoToTags NFC Encoder Software, Dauntless Software has helped solve this issue.  TraceWeed™, a service built on its agile TapNTrace™ service, uses off-the-shelf smartphones and a desktop app to allow growers and processors to vastly simplify tracking each item through its supply chain, from its point of origin to consumption, while complying with all state reporting requirements. TapNTrace™ was designed as a traceability solution for a variety of agricultural industries, from livestock and feed to flowers and fruits. Most consumers are unaware of the long journey their food takes before it reaches their plate. However, people are becoming more aware of the food they eat: Where did it come from? How fresh is it? Is it organic? In addition to the aforementioned questions, the life cycle of agricultural goods is a complex issue consumers, governments and industry leaders are attempting to address.

Dauntless has developed an end-to-end solution that allows their traceability service to be implemented in almost any industry and is not restricted to agriculture and marijuana. Durable, low cost tags, wide availability of NFC-enabled smartphones and ease of software development has allowed asset tracking to become a major vertical in the world of NFC.

Smartcards for Businesses with USB, QR and NFC, intelliPaper Creates swivelCard

Working smarter, having more information and giving more information, is what inspired the people at intelliPaper to create swivelCard—a smartcard for the business world. intelliPaper has developed a way to turn standard paper into a USB drive and integrated this patented process into business cards. The smart technology integrated into the business cards opens an entire realm of possibilities! The smartcards come with a unique ID which allows you to customize the experience you’re delivering to each individual. Have fresh content you want to share with the potential client you met last week? No problem! The data on the card never gets stale as you can remotely deliver new information by using the back-end interface.  This interface also supplies useful data on the card’s use with full analytics available. The smartcards are loaded with technology so there is no reason your client can’t receive the information you hope to share. The cards aren’t simply restricted to USB; they also understand the power of the Internet of Things and can be NFC-enabled. swivelCard presented GoToTags with the challenge of creating an NFC tag encoded with data to match the data presented with the QR code.  Luckily, the GoToTags Encoder software supports correlated tag encoding which allows any printed element to match the NFC encoding data. The innovative technology intelliPaper and GoToTags collaborated to create has the capacity to revolutionize the everyday applications of business card usage.

Arkon NFC Powered Car Dock for Android and Windows Phones

Arkon, a leading global manufacturer and supplier of mobile mounting solutions and accessories has increased its suite of products to help improve your driving experience. Arkon’s IntelliGrip car dock mount helps you automate your commute with a tap. The car dock fits all NFC-enabled Android and Windows smartphones up to 7.5 inches tall. GoToTags supplied a custom NFC sticker with the Trigger or NFC Task Launcher app encoded to it. By embedding the sticker onto the NFC holder and placing your device in the mount you will effortlessly launch your favorite apps, settings, listen to your favorite tunes and launch a navigation app. Users are able to connect hands-free devices automatically!

 

Sony Creates Hi-Res Audio Experience with NFC & GoToTags Platform

Each year over 100,000 students across Ontario and Quebec, Canada celebrate Frosh Carnival, an event that brings together a young and captive audience to meet new people, socialize with their peers, and sample cutting edge, innovative products. Sony Canada took part in Frosh Carnival this summer and promoted NFC technology along with their Hi-Res Audio products. Students could see the ease of using NFC to pair and stream music from any Android or NFC-enabled device directly to Sony’s headphones, wireless speakers, or sound bar. Sony Canada wanted a unique and unconventional way to engage users with its “Get Your Ears Ready” ad campaign video used to promote its Hi-Res Audio products. GoToTags helped Sony bring this vision to reality by creating a custom designed NFC silicone key chain. In addition, Sony’s “Get Your Ears Ready” ad campaign video was encoded with the GoToTags Platform to help Sony track their deployment. Typical NFC tag deployments offer no tracking or metrics, but by leveraging the power of Google Analytics, we were able to provide real-time reporting and tracking so that Sony could see where they were getting the best ROI on their deployment.

 

 

NFC Inlays Used by Knox Labs to Power Android Virtual Reality Kits

The folks at Knox Labs are passionate about two things: Android and CNC machines. As their motivation, they used the Android OS and CNC machines to distribute Google Virtual Reality kits. The project’s goal was to make virtual reality easy, exciting and affordable, as virtual reality kits are typically expensive to deploy and require specialized hardware. The only thing required to make this virtual reality experience possible is a kit and an NFC tag. Knox Labs uses GoToTags’ NFC inlays as their NFC tag of choice.

NFC Inlays are one of the most versatile, inexpensive and simplistic ways to deploy tags on the market.  Their small, lightweight and adhesive backing features give the tags the ability to be easily placed onto almost any surface.  Once the mobile device is placed on top, the Google Cardboard Android app launches automatically making the virtual reality experience effortless. Have a few more dollars to spend? Check out Knox Labs’ newly designed aluminum kit paired with our NFC inlays!

Barrett Art Gallery uses NFC to Connect Art to Community

The Edith Langely Barrett Art Gallery at Utica College, established in 1980, was built to commemorate Edith Langley Barrett, a Professor of English from 1961-1973. Barrett, with the support of fellow faculty, wanted to provide an expressive art venue for UC students. The art gallery is continuing that initiative by using NFC to bring art into the students’ lives. This isn’t the Barrett gallery’s first time using technology to engage with its audience. The gallery first adopted QR codes to deliver content to the community but has since evolved to NFC.  GoToTags helped with this project by providing NFC printed stickers. The printed stickers are encoded with the artwork’s data so the user can see an image of the item on their phone as well as the artwork’s title. They will soon transition  into utilizing NFC tags for data access to their art collection as well as for digital object sharing. Ideas are flowing at the Barrett Art Gallery as representatives are brainstorming new and creative ways to use NFC to improve the fine art experience. NFC offers endless options bringing art to life for Utica College students now and in the future.

Carolynne Whitefeather

NFC allows us to provide this new technology for an exhibition edge, and be a source for others to learn this technology.

Carolynne WhitefeatherGallery Director & Artist in ResidenceEdith Langley Barrett Art Gallery