The chips and tags that an NFC-capable phone can read are so tiny that they could eventually be ubiquitous, embedded in everything from posters in movie theaters and schools to real estate signs, and much more. These so-called infotags or smart tags will offer up all sorts of information to anyone who waves a smartphone at them.
At a movie theater, patrons could touch their phones to a poster for an intriguing film and be instantly directly to an online trailer. Or at school, students could use their phones to grab updated information on schedules and announcements.
Strolling by a home that's for sale? Wiggle your phone at the real estate company's sign and your phone immediately brings up all pertinent sales information on that house, including a video tour of the interior.
The chips work even in places more of more permanent residence. A system called Personal Rosetta Stone that lets cemetery visitors pull information from chip-laden headstones to read the life stories and obituaries of the deceased [source: Rosetta Stone].
There are thousands of other applications for this technology, and smartphones will help drive the proliferation of NFC. But suffice it to say, your smartphone will only find more and more ways to gather information from your tech-saturated environment, no matter where on Earth you might be.