Dec 01 AT 1:50 PM Taylor Wimberly 15 Comments

Samsung teases industry’s first NFC chip with flash memory

Today in Korea Samsung announced their new near field communications (NFC) chip with embedded flash memory. We have been keeping an eye on NFC because Google CEO Eric Schmidt said it would be a feature in Gingerbread and demonstrated it working on the Nexus S.

NFC is a short-range, high frequency wireless communication technology that only operates when two devices are about 4 inches apart. It is basically just another form of electronic identification except the ID is tied to a bank account or credit card company. All the user needs to do is just tap their NFC-enabled phone to a supported payment pad and complete the transaction.

Eric Schmidt said that in the future your phone could replace your credit card, so you can see how important this is to Google and their partners.

Samsung’s new NFC chip is the industry’s first to adopt flash for the embedded memory which allows handset makers to easily upgrade its software or firmware. If Google is in fact using this Samsung chip in the Nexus S, we expect it will become the standard for NFC in Android devices.

Although Samsung’s new NFC chip is scheduled for mass production in the first quarter of 2011, we have no information available as to when it will be incorporated into U.S. devices. We were expecting that Android 2.3 and the Nexus S would launch in the next few weeks, but it appears that the project has been delayed and we might not see it till early 2011.

Hopefully, we will be receiving more information on the Samsung Nexus S and its NFC chip soon.

Show Press Release

Samsung’s New Near Field Communication Chip Offers Increased Wireless Connectivity for Mobile Handsets

SEOUL, Korea, December 1, 2010 – Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in advanced semiconductor solutions, announced today its new near field communications (NFC) chip with embedded flash memory. Leveraging a low power design and advanced RF sensitivity, Samsung’s latest chip offers designers a competitive choice for next-generation smart phones with NFC capabilities. NFC enabled devices can instantly establish a wireless peer-to-peer connection and directly handover to Bluetooth and/or WiFi connection for fast, convenient data transmission.

“NFC is recognized throughout the industry as an easy and effective way to transmit encrypted information between mobile devices or between mobile devices and other stationary NFC-enabled devices such as kiosks,” said Tae-Hoon Kim, vice president of DDI and C&M marketing, System LSI Division, Samsung Electronics. “As momentum builds for adoption of NFC technology in next-generation/ upcoming smart phones, we look forward to securing a competitive footing in NFC-based solutions with our new NFC technology, offering powerful mobile characteristics such as low power design and advanced RF sensitivity.”
NFC is a short-range (up to 10cm or 4inches), high frequency wireless communication technology which allows devices such as smart phones to collect or transmit data to another NFC-enabled device without manual configuration to identify devices. In addition, NFC chip can play a role as a contactless smartcard in use for public transportation payments for bus and subway fares and mobile banking payments. It can also read RFID tags in retail stores or on outdoor billboards for convenient on-the-spot data access.

By leveraging its extensive experience in low power design, Samsung developed this NFC chip to have minimal power consumption in both active and stand-by mode. With a 20 percent decrease in power consumption, Samsung’s NFC chip remains active for mobile payment even without battery power.
Samsung’s new NFC chip is the industry’s first to adopt flash for the embedded memory which allows device designers to easily to upgrade software or firmware. For seamless integration and customer design efficiencies, Samsung also provides a software protocol stack and technology services for antenna design and tuning. Through such features and support, designers can reduce their product’s time–to-market.

According to market research firm, IMS Research, the mobile phone market is forecast to grow from 1.4 billon units in 2011 to 1.8 billion units in 2015 at a compound annual growth rate of seven percent. In 2011,NFC-enabled phone models are expected to gain pace and the ratio of mobile phones with NFC capabilities is expected to reach 26 percent in 2015.

Samsung’s new NFC chip is scheduled for mass production in the first quarter of 2011.

The new NFC solution will be displayed at the CARTES 2010 from December 7th through 9th at the Samsung booth 3C 035 in hall 3 at Paris-Nord Villepinte Exhibition Center.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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