How many times have you asked a person to give his business card in a conference and he said I have run out of cards? Of course sometimes its just an excuse when he/she does not want to give the card. Tagtual however seeks to improvise in this space by providing NFC based business cards.
Tap and go payments enabled through mobile devices with Near Field Communication (NFC) technology are gaining widespread (albeit slow) momentum with nearly 50% of all smartphones launched by 2015, to be NFC enabled. This would mean that 1 Bn NFC based handsets will be sold worldwide by 2016 which will support $50 Bn worth of transactions; approximately 15 Bn NFC tickets will be delivered to mobile devices worldwide by 2014 and around 300 Mn NFC enabled smartphones, tablets and eReaders will be sold in 2013, according to a report by AT Kearney.
Tagtual Technologies, a Bangalore based startup founded in 2012, announced the release of India’s first NFC business cards wherein a person can share his contact information with nothing but a tap of the card on a smartphone. NFC business cards provide an interactive experience better than what has been possible with the traditional print.
NFC business cards break the monotony of digging for a lost card on your desk or in the bag according to Sharjeel Ahmed, CEO of Tagtual Technologies. “These business cards benefit the customers in more than one ways and we are excited to have them launch in the market after an optimum period of trials and tests,” he said.
This latest offering from Tagtual provides many advantages over the traditional business cards - e.g., carry only a single card. Contact details including Name, Website, Designation, Facebook ID, E mail, Phone number etc., are immediately sent and linked to the smartphone on tapping the card over its surface. This also simplifies the task of entering and maintaining an address book. Other benefits include zero maintenance, product reliability and data security.
Digitization of business cards is not a new concept. I have been using SamCard app (there are tons of them) on my smartphone for quite a while now. A simple free app takes a picture of the business card and saves all the information on my iPhone.
LTP View: Businesses and entrepreneurs benefit significantly from a straightforward, convenient touch and go experience. The challenge is with effectively convincing people to the advantages of using NFC business cards over the traditional print. Considering the fact that there are simple technology solutions like free SamCard app (which is free) to solve the same problem largely while each NFC Business card costs Rs 300 (i.e. ~$5).
Another way to look at things is whether this feature alone would be bought by customers. One of my tech entrepreneur friend puts it "A feature is not a product, and a product is not a company." No doubt, this venture by Tagtual is the first of its kind in India, and there is a growing number of NFC enabled handsets but what if I could just get the email id or phone number of the person I met at the conference? What if I don't want to give my card?