One of the most well-known and traditional NFC conferences – WIMA NFC – took place in Monaco for the 7th time from 10. – 12. April 2013. Nokia was once again present as a sponsor with their own stand, and was showcasing several NFC apps on Windows Phone.
During the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, we got the opportunity to shoot a video showcasing NearSpeak! You’ll see the app demonstrated on two Lumia 920, including the live translation of the recorded voice message to the current user’s phone language!
NearSpeak previously won at the LumiaGeek 8-Week Challenge and was therefore invited to an app pitch at the WIPJam DemoCamp. 15 different app developers had the chance to show the best in intense 2-minute pitches, in front of a professional jury.
At the end of the event, the winners were announced – and NearSpeak was chosen as the overall winner! Therefore, the app will now be funded by the AppCampus program, move over to Azure cloud services and a lot more to come!
The popular NFCsms app has just received its first update. NFCsms extends Windows Phone and connects NFC tags & web sites that contain SMS links to the messaging app.
Without NFCsms installed, the phone would not know how to handle SMS links. Once the NFCsms app is installed, you will immediately be redirected to the default Windows Phone Messaging app. Therefore, the app does not need any kind of direct user interactivity, as it directly forwards your request to the messaging app – NFCsms only needs to be installed for the use case to work.
SMS links should look like: “sms:+1234?body=Hello” – this would send a message to “+1234″ with the body text “Hello”. Unfortunately, the links are sometimes written in a wrong way: “sms://+1234?body=Hello”. While the Windows Phone prompt upon encountering such an address prompts to send a message to “/”, the new version of NFCsms now corrects the wrong scheme and still extracts the correct recipient information.
Complete change log of the 1.1 update:
Now additionally supports incorrect – but sometimes used URI scheme “sms://” (correct is: “sms:”)
The major update to NearSpeak 2.0 adds an incredibly useful new feature: Multi-Language Tags!
Imagine an art exhibition: next to each painting, there is an NFC tag. As a visitor, you just tap the tag with your phone, and you will immediately hear the story behind the painting in your native language!
Creating Multi-Language Voice Message Tags
Record your voice message in your native language, then tap the NFC tag. NearSpeak will now register the message in the cloud and store a reference on the tag.
When the visitor / user taps the tag with his phone, it will automatically launch the NearSpeak app. This will retrieve the message depending on the current phone UI language from the cloud – automatically translated on demand and behind the scenes by the NearSpeak web service, based on the commercial Microsoft Translator tools.
The complete translation process is handled behind the scenes: what matters to you and your users is simply a service that works – provided by NearSpeak.
Translated and Single-Language Tags
Of course, NearSpeak 2.0 additionally includes the use cases of single-language tags, where you can optionally translate your message before writing it to the tag. This can be used to just leave an “I Love You” message for your partner or a reminder for yourself. In these situations, the actual message text is stored right on the tag – no Internet connection is required when reading it.
The new version of NearSpeak is now available for download from the Windows Phone Store for all WP8 devices. The app is still completely free; translation is a premium feature that can be bought right within the app.
In addition to multi-language tags, we also streamlined the user interface and improved the stability. The app should now run a lot more smoothly on all phone languages.
The new 126.96.36.199 update of Nfc Interactor for Windows Phone 8 fixes a small issue related to resuming the app from tombstoning when certain information was visible on the info page. The update is ready for download in the WP Store!
Several of the new features in Nfc Interactor 2.0 have been requested by our users – thanks a lot for your feedback! In addition, we added a lot of possibilities for professional users. A quick overview of what’s new:
Easier App Launching: Store Search for 3rd Party Apps
The most requested improvement was to make launching apps easier – done!
Choose the “LaunchApp (generic)” record and enter a search term (app name, publisher or keyword). Nfc Interactor will show you a list of all matching apps, retrieved live from the WP store.
Tap on the app you’d like the tag to launch – Nfc Interactor automatically inserts its ID to the tag composer; all you need to do is to write the tag and start launching any app with a simple tap!
Editing and Cloning Tags
One of the most useful features – tap and hold on a parsed message to open the new context menu:
Edit: open the message contents in the tag composer, so that you can edit the contents of the tag you have just read.
Clone: directly copy the NDEF message you just read from a tag to another NFC tag!
View raw bytes: shows the whole NDEF message as a hex string.
Copy to clipboard: copies the parsed NDEF message / the raw bytes hex string to the clipboard.
Send via email: share the message details and its raw data hex string, so that you can for example analyze its contents later at home on your PC!
We have received many questions on which tags work best for Windows Phone. This is especially tricky, as WP can only use standardized, NDEF formatted tags.
Many NFC tags you can buy are either not compatible or not usable right away, as they are completely empty and need to be formatted – which is not supported by the WP operating system.
Therefore, we’ve partnered with two of the most reliable NFC tag manufacturers: RapidNFC and TagAge. Order 100% WP compatible tags in various packages, with worldwide shipping and a great price!
Some of our users need the app to work on a much lower level – Nfc Interactor is the only WP NFC app that can write multiple records to a tag (on WP this is useful for developers only) and allows creating custom NDEF records by manually specifying type name format, type and payload.
With version 2.0, we just added a bunch of new advanced features:
NDEF Importer Tool: parse a supplied hex string into a complete NDEF message right in the tag composer page.
Hex payload for custom records: in addition to the text editor, you can now provide an arbitrary payload for a custom record through a hex string.
.nfc / .ndef file associations: launches Nfc Interactor from files, and parses their contents right into the tag composer. File contents can either be the raw bytes of the NDEF message or the contents as a hex string – Nfc Interactor will automatically detect the right format.
Open .nfc and .ndef files to directly load an NDEF message into the tag composer.
Specify the raw payload of a custom record using a hex string.
Import a complete NDEF message into the composer from a raw hex string.