As the Galaxy SIII hits America, Samsung have released 3 new ads for it showing how it can make things like photosharing and presentations easier.
Rather than embed them here, I’ll just link to the post I saw them on at Inneractive.com, by Hillel Fuld.
I’ve had a Galaxy SIII for about 5 weeks now, and it has to be said I do love the crap out of it. I’ve been having especially good fun with the NFC (near field communications) capabilites of the device, and I wanted to share with you a few of the ways that NFC has made some niggly little tasks that bit easier.
This one was a no-brainer. My iPad is WiFi only; I opted for that one because the phone I had at the time, my HTC Desire, could create a wifi hotspot and the iPad could go online through that. Since I always have phone with me when I have the iPad, I don’t need a second 3G device – £100 saved right away.
Turning on the hotspot on the Desire was easy enough as it was a seperate app. On the Galaxy SIII, turning on the hotspot means going to Settings >> More Settings >> Tethering and Portable Hotspot >>Portable Wifi Hotspot.
So, using NFC Task Launcher I created a toggle tag for the wifi hotspot. Touch it once and the hotspot activates, touch it a second time and it deactivates. I wrote the task onto a special “on metal” capable NFC sticker and popped it on the back of my iPad – simplicity itself!
If you’re doing this yourself be sure to use an “on metal” tag. Standard tags won’t work on metal surfaces like the back of an iPad because the circuit is exposed; on metal tags have a protective layer to stop the circuit and the metal surface from making contact.
I don’t currently have a bedside lamp. There’s only one power point beside my bed and it gets used to charge my phone or iPad overnight. I don’t want to put a multi-socket in as it would look messy and there’s a little part of me that still views them as a bit of a fire hazard.
I do currently have kids who still come crawling into bed with me at un-godly hours and then proceed to kick and punch me in their sleep. I use the camera flash on my SIII as a torch for reading or, if both of the kids have come into our bed, navigating my way dowstairs to the couch in the dark!
The SIII (as far as I can tell) doesn’t have a native torchlight app, so I installed the free TeslaLED app. The thing is, it’s a horrible shortcut icon and I don’t really want it using up valuable home screen space. So I left it tucked away in the apps menu, set up a tag for it and stuck it to my bed.
That’s right, dear reader. I’ve NFC enhanced MY BED!
Now, when I’m woken from my slumber by a 5 year old foot in the face and fancy doing some reading, or kicked out of bed entirely and have to decant to the couch downstairs, I grope for my phone which should always be in the same place anyway, touch it to the corner of the headboard, and let there be light!
The same tag also turns it off, but that’s easy to do with TeslaLED via the notifications bar anyway.
Something that’s always annoyed me about phones is how they can be really hard to see outside when it’s a really bright day. Granted, it’s not a common problem here Scotland but in recent times we’ve had a few bright, beautiful days.
The automatic brightness setting rarely gets it right. If it’s bright outside you need to manually crank the screen up to 100% brightness, and when you get back indoors you want to turn it all the way down again to save battery.
The problem is, of course, that when you’re outside in the sun you can’t see the screen properly to make the adjustment. It takes a combination of guesswork, recall, and strange looking attemps to cast a shadow over your phone before you can get the brightness up.
Well, not for me it doesn’t.
I created 2 tasks in NFC Task Launcher – one to set brightness to 100%, the other to set it to 0%. I then created a “switch” action which toggles between the two tasks in a similar way to the Hotspot On/Off task above.
I then wrote it to a wearable tag in the form of a fetching green NFC wristband which I slip on to my wrist if I’m having to venture out in the sun. I don’t care if it looks daft – I’m generally a long sleeves kinda guy, and I plan to switch it out for a black one soon anyway.
And there you have it. Three ways I’m using NFC every day.
I also have a tag in my wallet to toggle between WiFi and Mobile Data to save my battery, and one stuck to my work ID card which checks me in on Foursquare.
Beyond use as a payment system, like the one Barclaycard are touting just now, NFC is a feature many folk will ignore, but hopefully I’ve shown you why it’s worth spending a little time to familiarise yourself with it, and maybe given you some thoughts as to how you could use NFC yourself.
Are you using NFC regularly? I’d love to hear what you use it for, let me know by leaving a comment!