How RFID and NFC Are Changing the Entertainment Industry
Simple yet highly effective, RFID and NFC are two technologies whose versatility is bringing significant benefits to many different industries. They open the doors to innovative marketing, close the doors on intruders, help make operations more efficient and, most importantly, improve the relationship between the company and the customer. If that was not good enough, it can be quick to integrate these technologies into everyday use through the use of RFID labeling machines or inexpensive NFC chips.
Already these two technologies are making waves in the entertainment industry, which benefits from the innovations RFID and NFC provide. Here, we’ll examine how RFID and NFC are changing the entertainment industry.
One of the innovative ways NFC helps with marketing is through using NFC wristbands, such as those available from Universal Smart Cards. These clever devices enable employees who wear them to share marketing information by tapping the wristband on a potential customer’s phone. This marketing strategy has been used to let greeters at entertainment venues entice passers-by by sending them discounts and offers. Marketing professionals also use them at press conferences who use them to send press releases and contact details.
Embedding NFC tags into posters is another much-used marketing technique. Vegas hotel owner Caesars Entertainment uses over 4000 NFC tags in its resorts, helping smartphone owners find out information about their shows, casinos, and restaurants.
Security is high on everyone’s agenda, and users expect that entertainment venues will be safe places to visit. Today, RFID is making that security even more robust and user-friendly by replacing paper tickets with uniquely identifiable RFID tags, which are either embedded into intelligent cards or wristbands. As each card is linked to a specific user, it is possible to authenticate the ID of the person entering the venue and guarantee that the tickets haven’t been counterfeited. Linking devices with access control also makes it possible to restrict visitor access, ensuring they can’t enter ‘staff only’ areas.
RFID can also be used to track people, helping venues protect against overcrowding in busy areas. If traffic gets too busy, access can be restricted immediately by changing the settings on the software.
Another security issue for entertainment companies is knowing the whereabouts of their expensive, hi-tech equipment. Preventing items from getting lost or stolen can be a problem, especially on large sites. Attaching RFID tags on an object and placing a series of RFID readers around a venue ensures they can always be found.
Hi-tech equipment isn’t the only type of asset that RFID can benefit from. Many casinos now use playing chips that have RFID tags embedded into them. These are used to prevent counterfeit chips from being used to play or cashed in. And if RFID chips are stolen, they can be disabled, making them valueless – as was the case when $1.5 million worth of chips were taken from The Bellagio in Las Vegas.
NFC and RFID are helping to improve entertainment company operations in big and small ways. On the small side, a new range of NFC-enabled speakers produced by the likes of Sony and Samsung are helping DJs and small venues pair smartphones with the speakers. While music streaming still requires Bluetooth, NFC makes it easier to pair the devices.
On a larger scale, RFID is helping entertainment companies track their employees while at the venue. Providing employees with RFID intelligent ID cards, badges or wristbands enables managers to know the whereabouts of every staff member. This technology assists with time and management and can even be linked to payroll. The RFID devices can also be used for access control, preventing unauthorized entrance to the site and restricting employees’ movement to areas they have permission to go.
Aside from tracking people, RFID can also be used to keep track of inventory. Concert venues, for example, can stay on top of merchandising stock, while bars and restaurants can ensure that food and drink supplies don’t run out. They’ll also have a much more accurate picture of which products sell and which get left on the shelf.
Providing customers with RFID cards or wristbands presents another considerable benefit in the form of data. Every part of the venue they visit is logged, as is the amount of time they spend there. That information is collected if the card is also used as a loyalty card or a cashless vending card. This gives entertainment venues unprecedented insights into visitor behavior. It can highlight the venue’s most popular and unpopular attractions, showing companies where improvements need to be made. When linked to personal data supplied by customers, such as age, gender, details about children, home city, etc., the data opens incredible opportunities for personalized marketing.
RFID and NFC devices are becoming increasingly essential tools in the entertainment industry, and new and ever more innovative applications are constantly being developed. It’s not just their usefulness that makes them ubiquitous within the industry, though. Such intelligent technologies are also very inexpensive to implement. The low cost of RFID and NFC devices, such as tags, smart cards, wristbands, and readers, combined with their multifunctionality, means we will see them play a significant role in the entertainment sector for the foreseeable future.
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