Vintage wine firm 'taps' NFC tech for authentication

Selinko app screen shotChâteau Le Pin has turned to near-field communication (NFC) technology to help customers self-authenticate its vintage wines.

The Bordeaux-based winemaker has added NFC tags developed by Belgian authentication specialist Selinko to its bottles, allowing buyers to check that the wine is authentic simply by downloading an Android app to their smartphones and tapping the bottle.

NFC technology is already used in the banking sector for making payments using mobile phones, as well as other applications such as travel ticketing systems. For example it underpins the Oyster card system employed on the London Underground.

It is a rapidly growing technology with more than 500 million NFC devices expected on the market within a year, according to ABI Research.

The NFC tag used on bottles of Le Pin's 2010 vintage is concealed behind the regular wine label and contains an encrypted and tamper-proof digital certificate, according to Selinko. 

The company said its system can also be used to deliver interactive services such as "product information (number, production, description, date of purchase, tasting notes, etc.), declaration of ownership of the bottle, and access to the product community and to certain privileges".

Selinko has also collaborated with clothing guru Daniel Hechter and urban architect Constantin Costoulas (known as Costa) on a range of interactive designer furniture that makes use of its NFC tags.

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