How to Program NFC Tags

How to program NFC Tags

Near Field Communication (NFC) tags are a great way to make your life a little easier. They can help you to automate many activities, thus saving you time.

If you’re wondering how to program NFC tags and tap all their benefits, then we’ve got you covered. Here, we will show you how to program NFC tags for iOS and Android.Let’s get started!

What is NFC, and How Does It Work?

NFC, which stands for Near Field Communication, was developed by Sony in the late 2000s. It is a wireless communication feature that sends short-range signals between two NFC-enabled devices.

NFC tags are small stickers with a chip that can send information to other NFC-enabled devices when they are in close proximity. You can use an NFC tag writer, or any other compatible device, to program the tags.

What is NFC Tag Programming?

NFC tag programming is simply the act of writing information to an NFC tag. For example, you might program an NFC tag to store your contact information, so that any compatible device can read it and add it to their phone book.

NFC tags are also used for tasks such as sharing photos with other people, opening a website or application by tapping your phone against the sticker, or having your phone automatically connect to accessories like speakers when in close range.

How to program NFC Tags – Step by Step Guide

First, you should check whether you meet the following requirements to program your NFC tag successfully:

  • A blank NFC tag – You can buy one cheaply at your favorite online store
  • NFC-enabled phone (either Android or iPhone)
  • NFC writing app (available on the Google Play Store and App Store). Examples include NXP Tagwriter, NFC Tools, and NFC Writer by Trigger.

A. How to Write an NFC Tag with Android

  • Step 1: Enable NFC on Your Device

You must enable NFC on your phone to write an NFC tag successfully. To do this, go into the main settings menu and select Wireless & Networks. Then tap ‘More’ at the bottom of the right corner to expand the options menu. Scroll down until you find NFC, then check the box next to it so that a checkmark appears.

  • Step 2: Open Your Writing App (NFC Writer by Trigger for this Demonstration)

Install your NFC writing app on your device. Then open the app, and tap + sign to add a new action. This will allow you to write to an NFC tag by placing it in front of the back camera of your device.

  • Step 3: Select NFC

When you tap the + sign, you’ll be required to choose the location of your action. Tap NFC and click next.

  • Step 4: Add Restrictions

Now you can choose the restrictions of your action. For this demonstration, we want to change the tag content every time it is read by a different device, so tap ‘Switch on’. Then select ‘Add restriction’ at the bottom of your screen.

  • Step 5: Add Content Restriction

Once you’ve added the restrictions for your action, you will be asked to set the NFC tag content restrictions. To do this, tap ‘Switch on” and then select ‘Add restriction’. Now you must choose whether your tag’s content should be the same every time or different for read/write operations.

  • Step 6: Set Your Actions

Now you can decide whether to write your tag from scratch or a template. There are many templates to choose from. It’s up to you which one works best for what you want to do with it.

For example, you can toggle the Bluetooth on. This action means that the Bluetooth will be turned on/off whenever you tap the NFC tag.

Alternatively, you can choose to add a new action. Tap on Add more actions. You’ll be required to type the action. Here, you can type a website’s URL or any other action. 

  • Step 7: Click Done and Write Your NFC Tag

Now all you need to do is write your tag and tap done! You can see more examples on the app’s website.

If you ever want to edit the content of your tag, simply open it up again by launching your writing app and tapping + sign. Then choose ‘Open an existing action’ and make your changes.

B. How to Use an NFC Tag with iPhone

You should ensure that your device is an iPhone 7 or newer. We recommend that you have at least iOS 13 installed on your device. Here are the two main ways to use NFC with your device:

  • Triggering a shortcut
  • Writing an NFC tag with iPhone

Trigger an iOS Shortcut

This is the easiest way to use an NFC tag on an iPhone. It allows you to create custom messages by simply tapping on your phone’s NFC tag. To add a shortcut, you should follow these simple steps:

  • Open the shortcut application on your phone and tap on Automation> Create Personal Automation.
  • Scroll down to find the NFC option. Select it and tap on the “Scan” option.
  • Put your phone near your NFC tag. Enter the name of the tag for customization
  • Click on Add Action and select the action you want to add. You can either choose from already existing actions or create a new one.
  • Click on Next. Once you’ve added your action, you should click on the Next button located on the top corner (right).
  • Customize the Action. Here, you’ll determine whether the action will run automatically or not. If you want automatic action, toggle off the “Ask before Running” option.
  • Click Done. Yes! That’s all, you can activate the action by placing the phone near your NFC tag.

Writing an NFC Tag with iPhone

You must have a blank NFC tag and an NFC writing application. Once you have them, you should follow the following guide:

  • Install the required application on your phone. We recommend NFC Tools, which is available for free in the iOS App Store
  • Open the App and click on the “Write” option. Then click on “Add Record”.
  • Choose an action from the available options. Some of the common actions include URL and text.
  • Enter the action (for example, a URL) and tap Okay
  • Tap on Write and then Approach your NFC tag to complete the process

That’s all. You will trigger your action by placing the tag near the phone. If you’re looking to use this as a password replacement, look up “Log In” as an action instead of a URL.

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