All blog posts

RFID, NFC, and QR Codes - What's The Difference - MeetingPlay

Blair Pettrey

Stay in touch with us! Be alerted of new products and news.

When it comes to events, there are multiple solutions that help event professionals engage, interact and entice their event attendees. One way to promote, and empower event professionals at their events, is the tools they choose they use to communicate with their attendees. MeetingPlay offers multiple solutions for event communication – NFC (also known as Near Field Communication), QR Codes, iBeacon technology, and RFID (also known as radio frequency identification).

Each of these options, NFC, QR Codes, and RFID provide a way to communicate and interact/engage with your event attendees when they are engaging within your event app. They play an active part of how your event app adoptees engage and interact - they are ‘active’ tools.

While they are active, there is also a passive opportunity for communication with your event attendees, and that is through push notifications.

While NFC, QR codes and RFID require attendees to be actively engaging with your event app, push notifications can also communicate and alert your event attendees in a passive roll – without your attendees needing to engaging or actively using your event app.

Each event communication solution serves as a unique and worthwhile tool, but for the purposes they provide may differ.


NFC – as we introduced earlier, is short for Near Field Communication.

NFC would be incorporated through both an events mobile event app, as well as their event attendee’s badges.  NFC alerts are automatically generated and appear on mobile devices based on the proximity of a NFC reader and an enabled device – such as an attendees badge.

Examples of NFC technology in use range from event attendees accessing event information and downloadable material when in range, to alerts, emails and notifications based on what content event attendees engaged with throughout the day.

The Pro’s of NFC:

NFC is great for engaging with attendees in a near, close proximity – hence the name, near field communication.

The Con’s of NFC:

NFC only works when event attendees are directly engaging with NFC readers and codes. It does not allow communication, or connection when not actively and presently located near the reader.

QR Codes:

QR Codes, aka ‘quick response codes’ are a great tool for event engagement, communication, and knowledge spreading. Through mobile and other devices, previously generated QR codes can help events encourage attendee engagement, promote and support sponsors and vendors, and be part of your event’s gamification.  (You can read more about MeetingPlay’s usage of QR codes at events here.)

The Pro’s of QR Codes:

Whether your event chooses to incorporate QR codes on attendee badges, or it’s merely an individual attendee option within your event app – QR Codes are easy, quick and a great solution to promote and encourage networking and engagement.

The Con’s of QR Codes:

Typically, one might think that QR codes are a pain because one must have a scanner already downloaded on their mobile or tablet device. However MeetingPlay’s custom event apps include QR scanners for those that choose to utilize this type of communication system – thus truly, there’s not many con’s to QR codes! J


RFID is short for radio frequency identification. RFID utilizes mobile devices electromagnetic spectrum to engage with other electromagnetic spectrums. Similar to NFC – RFID requires event attendees to be in close proximity to engage with RFID technology. Unlike NFC which requires a mobile device, RFID tags can be implemented into badges or other wearable technology and interact without the need of a mobile device.

The Pro’s of RFID:

RFID doesn’t require mobile devices – which once upon a time was a huge win before every event attendee typically had a smart phone.

The Con’s of RFID:

RFID if utilized on mobile devices, typically capacities more device battery due to the consistent searching for RFID tags.

In Conclusion:

RFID, NFC and QR codes all provide unique and quality solutions for event professionals wanting to engage, interact and communicate with their attendees. Each of these solutions are available as an option from MeetingPlay and most mobile event apps. There are additional solutions that we did not include in this post – such as iBeacon technology, BLE, eddystone and more.

Whether you choose to incorporate one or multiple solutions in your next event app,

MeetingPlay's custom mobile event apps can do it for you!


New Call-to-action