NFC (Near Field Communication) technology
Major mobile phone manufacturers embed NFC technology in their high-end and mid-level products. There are growing use cases for NFC technology in mobile applications, including:
- Contactless payment
- Fast Bluetooth and WiFi pairing
- Phone-to-phone communication
In addition to mobile handsets, you can find NFC technology embedded in a wide range of peripherals, such as speakers, wristbands, and home appliances.
Micropross proposes a full range of turnkey solutions for debugging, conformance, and manufacturing NFC devices. Our solutions are validated by the NFC Forum, and are used by the majority of today’s NFC Forum authorized test laboratories.
Micropross also offers solutions aimed at characterizing access to the secure element—used during the NFC transaction. This link can be based on SWP (Single Wire Protocol), I2C, or SPI.
Conformance Testing and RF Debugging
Micropross proposes a wide range of hardware and software solutions, allowing test laboratories or R&D centers to develop, characterize, and gain insight into the compliance of their design according to NFC Forum specifications.
Micropross RF solutions fully implement the test specifications defined by the NFC Forum on all 4 layers :
- NFC Forum Analog: This test suite is used to ensure that the RF interface of the NFC device under test is in compliance with the NFC Forum requirement. Tests include load modulation amplitude (LMA), field strength, and input sensitivity.
- NFC Forum Digital Protocol (DP) : This test suite contains more than 1300 test cases, and is going to perform each and every test scenario defined by the NFC Forum. Timing, retransmission, Tag operation, parity error handling are among the test that are typically performed.
- NFC Forum LLCP (Logical Layer Control Protocol)
- NFC Forum SNEP (Simple NDEF Exchange Protocol)
With the Micropross solutions for conformance, you can address a variety of standards and protocols, including ISO 14443 type A, ISO 14443 Type B, ISO 15693 and FeliCa. In addition, it offers the capability to test your NFC device in card mode, reader/writer mode, or Peer 2 Peer (P2P) mode. Micropross is able to supply all items necessary to perform these tests--generation and measurement hardware, automated software test cases, and positioning robots.
Micropross is listed by NFC Forum as an approved test tool provider, meaning that our test solutions have been validated and approved by NFC Forum. Current versions covered are the current 2015B, but legacy versions like 2015A are also available and certified by the NFC Forum. The NFC Forum 2.0 test specification will be available soon.
Micropross is a member of the GCF (Global Certification Forum). Their solutions can be used by all GCF RTO who wish to propose NFC test services to their customers. Micropross also supports the GCF WI-236 work item.
Customers looking for a more in-depth testing and characterization of their device’s RF interface may also reference the EMVCo test cases and the ISO 10373-6 test cases from Micropross.
Debugging and Certifying the Secure Element Interface
As mentioned above, there are many ways to access a secure element during a NFC transaction. For a secure element—as opposed to Host Card Emulation (HCE)—SWP, I2C or SPI can be used.
For the SWP interface, Micropross offers several tools. Interoperability, or field issues may be debugged using the MP300 SC2, or the MP007, as they are able to operate as passive protocol analysers for SWP and ISO 7816 protocols.
We also offer full conformance test solutions for the SWP/HCI interface, to test both the secure element itself (no matter if it is packaged as a U-SIM, or as a e-SIM), and the secure element reader—or Contactless Front End (CLF).
To test the SWP/HCI interface of a CLF, we recommend using the MP500 TCL3 and the MP300 SC2 hardware. We also offer software libraries that are validated by both the GCF, and the PTCRB. The test specifications are ETSI TS 102.694-1 (SWP) and ETSI TS 102.695-1 and ETSI TS 102.695-3 (HCI). Customers looking to work on a FeliCa based implementation of FeliCa may also be interested in our CLF test tool for the FeliCa over SWP interface, jointly developed with Sony.
To test the SWP/HCI interface of a U-SIM, the recommended hardware is the MP300 TC3. We also have a software library, implementing all test cases defined in the ETSI TS 102.694-2 (SWP) and ETSI TS 102.695-2 (HCI), all validated by GlobalPlatform.
For I2C and SPI interfaces, the MP300 SC2 is a tool that will allow you to monitor which exchanges happen on the communication bus. It is even possible to synchronize this with one of our NFC capable spy tools (MP300 ACL1, MP007).
Unlike in conformance, testing NFC-enabled mobile phones in a manufacturing environment does not have specific rules defined by the NFC Forum or its members. However, Micropross offers test equipment for performing deep analysis on your DUT, all while keeping the price per test head low and the throughput high.
For manufacturing test, we recommend the MP500 PT1-NFC. With this production test solution you can perform a multitude of measurements, such as the load modulation amplitude (LMA), loading effect, and frame delay time (FDT)—all in a fully automated and quick manner. Proven within industrial test runs, the MP500 PT1-NFC has demonstrated 3x faster test times when compared to the competition for identical test plans.