What can you do with NFC on Windows Phone 8?

Microsoft brought a lot of new features to Windows Phone 8. We now have higher screen resolutions, faster processors, and perhaps the most overlooked feature: NFC. If you’re unfamiliar with NFC it stands for near field communication, and it basically means you can transfer info/data between two devices by touching them together.

The Lumia 920 and HTC 8X both have NFC capabilities, which means a lot of people have access to this technology for the first time. So what can you do with it?

The easiest thing you can do is transfer things between devices with NFC. For example, if you and your friend have a 8X you can share photos, videos, websites, and contacts just by tapping them together. If you’re friend has an Android phone with NFC there are some things you can do to (as seen below).

If you’d like to go a little deeper with NFC you will need to buy some tags. You can find NFC tags pretty cheap (here is one place), but make sure you get NTAG and not Mifare 1K. Once you get some tags you will need an app to write them with. Unfortunately there are not many options right now.

NFC Interactor is the best app to use for writing a NFC tag. It will allow you to do some cool stuff like automatically open apps and webpages, create a status on social networks, make a call or text, and interact with accessories. This all works very well, but the one thing a lot of people will want to do is not possible.

A lot of people will want to set up a NFC tag to toggle WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, or other settings, Unfortunately you won’t be able to do that. There are workarounds, however. For example: if you want to set up a tag to toggle WiFi you can download this app and set it to automatically open. It won’t toggle the WiFi on and off, but it will let you do it quickly.

NFC is cool, but right now it has limited functionality on Windows Phone. It can be useful in some situations, like opening Maps when you dock your phone in your car, but for right now there is a lot left to be desired.


  • Sondre Krumsvik

    So: Android beam takes less time? (Just put them upon eachother and then send it). Windowsphone 8: takes longer time because you have to og to options, share, tap to send and send.
    Am I right or was it wrong?

  • You are correct

  • Edgar Cervantes

    Hopefully Windows Phone gets more of the features Android has soon. I love being able to let people sign into my WiFi network without giving them my password. I have them all over the place, use them for my alarm, wifi/bluetooth on/off, GPS, etc. I actually never use it for transferring things to other people.