This blog series showcases the creative minds behind some of the most intriguing applications for Near Field Communication (NFC).
In constant pursuit of “delightful product experiences,” Ankit is a graduate of the University of California, in Davis, and lives in San Francisco. He’s founder and head of products for The Orange Chef, a company dedicated to smart kitchens.
NXP: Tell us what does your application do, and how does it use NFC?
Ankit: Our aim is to remove the friction from eating healthier on an everyday basis, by answering the question, “What should I eat right now?”
Very early on, when we started talking to people about their kitchens, we learned about their struggles to eat healthier at home. It often came down to either being inconvenient or not knowing where to start. Nutrition and food are very personal, so we set out to build a product that really could help people achieve their everyday food goals.
The result is Countertop, a smart kitchen system that gives personalized snack and meal recommendations to help users eat better and achieve their goals. NFC adapters, which can be installed in just one step, are now available for Vitamix® blenders and Crock-Pot® slow cookers, and more are on the way. Every time you connect an appliance, your kitchen gets a little smarter, Countertop gets a little more powerful, and, most important, your eating habits change a little for the better.
NXP: Why did you choose NFC?
Ankit: NFC was a natural fit because it’s affordable as an add-on accessory, perfect for short-range communication with our hardware base, and allows for reading and writing data to and from the tag.
NXP: What about security?
Ankit: It’s essential. It ensures that each adapter that’s sold remains unique and identifiable to the partners we work with.
NXP: Where do you see this going?
Ankit: Given the prevalence of iOS devices in the kitchen, it’s been a great step forward to see Apple adopt NFC for its latest devices. If they open up this functionality to developers, it will greatly improve penetration of NFC in the connected home and kitchen.
Home security remains a possibility for NFC, with the ability to tap to unlock or disengage. Also, using NFC to hand off your user settings and preferences into different environments, including the living room and bedroom.
NXP: Tell us a bit about how you think. What’s one of the open tabs on your browser right now?
NXP: What do you think has been the most important technological invention in human history?
Ankit: Even though I’m tempted to go with hardware devices, like PCs and mobile phones, in my lifetime thus far I’d say the Internet (which, of course, needs hardware to be truly valuable). The amount of progress I’ve seen from childhood to now, because of the Internet, is truly remarkable. In human history? That’s a tough one. I’ll stay biased and say semiconductor electronics, which enabled everything else that came after.
NXP: If you weren’t in your current job, what would you do instead?
Ankit: Probably something with numbers – maybe finance.
NXP: Sounds… logical! Thanks for taking time to talk to us.
NFC in Smart Homes
NFC Everywhere TechZone