Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2012 about Near Field Communication

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Saturday 10th March 2012

  • NFC: No Freakin' Chance?

    by James Davies and Rachel Youens

    Ask the average American about NFC and they’ll tell you that the New York Giants are the champs. For all the musing the tech community loves to make about NFC, envisioning a future of smart posters and tap payments, the technology has yet to gain much mainstream interest. The current surveys and projections send us a mixed message that while NFC-enabled phones will dominate by 2014, at present most people just don’t care about mobile payments. NFC could end up a phenomenon or a flop, and it all depends on the moves of a few key players. Is this the next big innovation or just the next Q-Cat or Gizmondo? We’ll look at the Vegas odds for an NFC win in US, the players that could make it happen and the technical and psychological challenges that could keep Americans from ever knowing NFC isn’t something you need cleats and a cup for.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Room 616AB, Hilton Austin Downtown

Sunday 11th March 2012

  • No Wallet? No Problem. Enter Mobile Payments.

    by David Berkowitz, Jeff Miles, Jaymee Johnson and David Messenger

    The days of having that lump of a wallet in your back pocket or forgetting your wallet at home are over. Consumers around the world could generate as much as $50 billion in sales through NFC-based mobile payments by 2014, according to Juniper Research. Google already has merchants like Macy’s and The Container Store is using Google Wallet, powered by NXP’s secure NFC chips, to increase engagement and offer deals to consumers. And Austin, our very own home of SX, is among the initial launch markets of ISIS’ NFC-driven mobile commerce trial. American Express, while recognizing the value of NFC, currently sees the technology as smoke and mirrors because it’ll take several years before the possibility of mass adaptation because of the limit and requirements of its reach. American Express’ stance is that the mobile payments ecosystem needs to look at products that are technology agonistic and as open as possible. Hear from panelists across the mobile payments ecosystem about the challenges of increasing adaption of this new technology and how to address them.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Salon J, Hilton Austin Downtown

  • I'd Bump That: NFC Growth from Play Will Pay

    by Paul Gelb

    NFC is not a new or particularly sexy technology. For years it has failed to gain traction amongst consumers and businesses as a mobile payment solution. Yet recently, NFC has been a major focus of tech giant uber-disruptors, venture capitalists, start-ups and marketers. Why? NFC yields a much broader opportunity than what arises from contact-free payments and a slice of transaction fees. NFC can connect a consumer with the physical world in ways that generate an infinite number of new engaging interactions for consumers and valuable data points for businesses. This panel will discuss which engaging NFC consumer experiences will drive user adoption, and how NFC will ignite billions of dollars of incremental revenue from user data, marketing services and new mobile powered products.

    At 1:00pm to 1:15pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Texas Ballroom 4-7, Hyatt Regency Austin

    Coverage audio clip

Monday 12th March 2012

Tuesday 13th March 2012

  • Creating a Mobile Wallet Worth Having

    by Omar Green

    With buzzwords like “NFC” and “mobile wallet” thrown about in the press ad nauseam, consumers and the mobile and financial industries are looking for who will emerge the winner in the effort to control mobile money – and there’s a great deal of money to be had if it’s done right. But as often as the mobile wallet is lauded for its convenience, it’s derided as “a solution in search of a problem.” Ultimately, in order to meet the real needs of consumers, wallet-makers need to stop focusing solely on the technologies of mobile payments, and actually look at what will drive usage: a mobile solution that is actually worth having. This doesn’t yet exist, but it could, if application developers create tools that actually change the way merchants and consumers feel, think, spend and save money. We will discuss what the true opportunity is for the mobile wallet and the elements that need to be included to move beyond technologies like NFC, to delivering the customer benefit to end users.

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Tuesday 13th March

    In Rio Grande, Hilton Garden Inn Austin Downtown

  • Mobile Payments: Transforming Consumer Marketing

    by Rick Orr

    Mobile payments are booming. Nearly 70 million Americans with smartphones are looking for a convenient way to pay without using plastic. Enter NFC, Google Wallet, Tabbedout and other technologies and companies making it easier and more secure than ever to pay with your phone.
    But what if paying with your phone offered more than just convenience? Mobile payments create a direct relationship between merchants and consumers. This technology puts power in the hands of the consumer to opt-in for personalized special offers from the businesses they frequent, and for businesses to capture customer habit and preference data and use it to create actionable, custom offers. Frequent a local pub? Walk into the bar and receive a digital coupon for your favorite beverage to thank you for being a loyal customer. Have a favorite restaurant? Your phone can deliver an appetizer recommendation based on your preferences and offer it half price.
    This session will give an in-depth look at how mobile payments are not only changing the way people pay, but are also the next big marketing platform, connecting consumers and merchants to create a personalized relationship via technology.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Tuesday 13th March

    In Rio Grande, Hilton Garden Inn Austin Downtown

    Coverage audio clip