UPDATE: 25th September, Apple announced that the new iPhones, (the XS and XR) will have NFC reading capabilities in the background, meaning you don't need an app or to even unlock the phone to read NFC tags. We've put together some videos to show you exactly how quickly is works. TO see what you can do with it we've put together a list of 7 of our favourites.
Or, at least, you will be able to in a few days time after you've installed iOS 11 (due for release on 19 September) on an iPhone 7, 8, or X, and have downloaded an NFC app.
You'll then be able to use the app to interact with NFC tags encoded with something called NDEF. Basically this means that NFC-enabled posters and packaging that trigger a mobile web experience will most likely work, but those that do things like connecting your phone to technology products like accessories, WiFi networks, etc. probably won't.
All you'll need to do is put your iPhone over an item that incorporates an NFC tag (usually indicated by a NFC symbol or clear call to action) to trigger all kinds of mobile experiences, whether for information, entertainment, discounts, loyalty, to make a contactless donation, and much more.
Whilst developers won't be able to use their iPhone to program NFC tags, they can use a tag management system like ours to buy 'dynamic' tags whose behaviour can be changed remotely, either directly through our web-based platform or programmatically via our APIs.
You can see the app in action in the video below.