du looks to bring NFC technology to Dubai


du plans to have consumers pay for their Metro tickets using NFC technology

Commuters in Dubai will soon beDubai Metro Station with NFC Technology using their smart phones to purchase Metro tickers thanks to United Arab Emirates telecommunications giant du. du has seen a great need for more efficiency in Dubai’s public transportation system. As such, the company has announced its partnership with the UAE’s Roads and Transport Authority. Through this partnership, du will work to incorporate NFC technology into the country’s public transportation system, with the foundation of this endeavor being laid in Dubai.

NFC technology could open the way for mobile commerce in Dubai

NFC technology allows for the wireless transmission of data from a mobile device to a stationary system. This technology is most often used in mobile commerce, where it can transform smart phones into mobile payment platforms. This is one of the purposes the technology will serve in du’s initiative. The company plans to work NFC technology into the public Metro system, allowing those with smart phones to purchase tickets.

Lack of NFC-enabled devices could slow progress

The most significant challenge that du will face with its use of NFC technology in Dubai’s public transportation system is the low availability of NFC-enabled devices. Only mobile devices equipped with an NFC chip of some kind can interact with NFC services. Thus, a typical smart phone, such as the iPhone 5, that does not have an NFC chip cannot facilitate mobile transactions. du, as well as other companies in the telecommunications business, is working to solve this problem by introducing new NFC-enabled smart phones to the market. Whether consumers are willing to pay a slightly higher price for these phones just because they have an NFC chip has yet to be seen.

The UAE may be a cashless society in the future

If du’s endeavor with Dubai’s Metro is successful, NFC services are likely to expand throughout the United Arab Emirates. There is talk regarding the country eventually becoming a cashless society, with commerce relying heavily on mobile technology and NFC. In order for this to happen, the UAE must first overcome the significant problems that exist in mobile commerce and NFC technology, such as security, efficiency, and an appropriate infrastructure.

Augmented reality comes to South Africa


Augmented reality featured on cover of Rolling Stone

Augmented reality has come to South Africa. The technology, which is acclaimed for its ability to engage consumers with high quality digital content, has been experiencing a rapid rate of growth and adoption all over the world. Augmented reality is capable of providing consumers with a dynamic experience where they would have otherwise found nothing, which is part of the reason the technology has become so popular with businesses. This week, the South African edition of Rolling Stone magazine brought the technology into the limelight by featuring augmented reality on its cover.

Cover content unlocked using Layar

The cover of the magazine, as well as some of the pages therein, are embedded with digital experiences that can be unlocked using a smart phone. These experiences were crafted with the help of Layar, one of the world’s leading augmented reality platforms. Much of the digital content that consumers can unlock is concerned with musician Anno Carstens. This content, much of which takes the form of interactive video, can be seen using the Layar mobile application, which is available for both Android and iOS platforms.

Sony’s Wonderbook also arrives in South Africa

The magazine is not the only ship that brought augmented reality to South Africa. Acclaimed game maker Sony has also launched a new title called Wonderbook in the country. Wonderbook is a peripheral system for the Playstation 3, which allows gamers to experience augmented reality content. The first title that will be associated with the Wonderbook platform comes from prestigious author J.K. Rowling and will feature that magical spells that Rowling’s Harry Potter has become known for.

Country could become a valued market for augmented reality products in the future

Augmented reality is making waves around the world. South Africa is one of the latest countries to see augmented reality find its way into magazines and games. If consumers respond favorably to the technology, South Africa may become a primary market for companies that are interested in providing digital services and content based upon this technology.