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Desperate NFC Forum extends competition deadline

Free kit, cash prizes - come on! Anyone?

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The Near Field Communication (NFC) Forum's annual search for a reason to exist competition has been extended by a month in attempt to get some more entrants, with a prize of €5,000 being offered to the winners.

Entry to the competition was supposed to close at the end of January, but has now been extended to the end of February in what might appear to be a desperate attempt to get some decent entries. Winners of each category will get €5K, with runners-up getting €1,500 and third place pocketing €1,000, though they might have shelled out as much as €350 of the privilege of entering at all.

Forum members only have to pay €200 while students can sneak in for €50, and everyone entering now gets a free NFC-enabled Nokia handset and USB development kit from Stollmann (while stocks last) - so if you're a student with €50 to spare it might make a handy way to get some toys to play with.

And an expensive toy is what this short-range wireless connectivity tech is turning out to be. Countless trials have shown that NFC is a nice thing to have, but no one is prepared to pay much for it, and without a business model that makes money for the people who are expected to pay for it - the mobile network operators - the technology is pretty much dead in the water.

So the Forum extends the deadline for another four weeks, and maybe someone will be struck by the genius idea that makes us all think what we really need is another transceiver in our mobile phones. More likely we'll see more pretty demonstrations of impractical applications, and NFC will end up as an enhanced RFID standard for a few vertical applications. ®

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