We are certain that almost anyone has heard about Near-Field Communication, also known as NFC, but how many of you have heard about Near-Field Audio? This is a rather new technology, publically introduced in January this year, and its benefits were severely hidden, right from the start. To counter-attack these moves and to do the world a good, iFrogz in collaboration with AT&T has introduced a special kind of mobile speakers, called the BOOST Plus.
BOOST Plus is not a regular external speaker set for the phone, but something very interesting. From what we have seen until today, this is the first widely sold mechanism that can stream music wireless, to any smartphone at all, disregarding any requirements about operating system, Bluetooth version or NFC compatibility. Simplicity, at its best.
The Advantages of Near-Field Audio
At this moment, the most spread wireless speakers for smartphones are based on a combination of NFC and Bluetooth, where both technologies are required before finishing the handshake. The main downside with this concept is that a set of speakers will only accept a specific range of phones, that has to comply with the proper near-field communication standard and must have the same Bluetooth version. Another requirement would be the mobile operating system, with speakers only acknowledging Android as compatible.
With Near-Field Audio, all these problems vanish. NFA is based on electromagnetic induction and requires only placing the smartphone in a specific position to ally a couple of “transfer” points. Once this is done, the music flows through the air, almost magically, without having to worry about iOS and NFC support.
NFA has some downsides as well, because the system requires a specific position and the phone must always remain attached. Users cannot move in a 10-meter radius like they do with conventional systems, but we can safely agree that the vast compatibility will be a bigger plus.
Introducing the iFrogz BOOST Plus
The BOOST Plus is the first NFA accessory that arrives at AT&T in the form of a docking station, but without any wires or USB plugs attached. The system needs three AA batteries to run or a wall outlet to function properly. In matters of dimensions and design, the speakers are a bit bigger than a Samsung Galaxy S3 and almost six times as thick.