ST25 NFC Tags Inside Phantom by Paco Rabanne or Lessons From the First NFC-enabled Fragrance
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phantom, the world’s first connected fragrance, houses a st25tv02k nfc tag on its spray cap, allowing paco rabanne to offer unique features to customers. the mechanism is simple. users hold their phone close to the bottle and a notification appears, sending them to a url. the container, shaped like a robot, thus becomes a gateway to the world and services of the fragrance. Right now, Paco Rabanne offers customers a playlist of songs that were at the top of the charts on a specific day in a particular month. for example, customers can see all the songs trending on their birthday throughout the years. The company also provides an Instagram sticker in the shape of the robot for quirky selfies. the first bottles were available in mid-July to travel retail stores only. paco rabanne will launch his new fragrance in stores around the world during the month of august.
add electronics where none existed, a modern minefield
Near Field Communication (NFC) brought the ability to add electronics to items that previously had none. For instance, some winemakers now use type-5 tags for anti-tampering, asset tracking, and brand building. However, adding digital connectivity to a product can be a minefield. The technology must work everywhere, regardless of each country’s regulations. The experience must be flawless for all customers, or users will hate it, negatively impacting the overall brand. And, there must be a significant added value, or the technology will appear meaningless. Put simply, companies struggle to figure when and how to add digital connectivity to their products because they know that a wrong implementation may be damaging.
phantom, by paco rabanne, is highly symbolic because it shows that it is possible to add digital connectivity to a fragrance and do it well. As the company explained, its people understood that adding NFC was viable and essential after experimenting with ST tags. The ST25TV02K is compatible with ISO 15693 standard, which offers a long enough range. The device has an internal tuning capability of 99 pf. therefore, it allows for a small antenna that fits in a small space, in this case, the diffuser of the bottle. In addition, the device is NFC Type 5 certified, offering significant interoperability with NFC-enabled smartphones. ultimately, paco rabanne is in a position to inaugurate a new trend in the consumer market. a few years earlier and the experience would not have been so optimal. a few years later, the company would be just one of many.
ghost: why adding nfc is the new norm
a tool for building worlds
paco rabanne chose a unique approach with phantom. Companies that integrate NFC into their product often have commercial features in mind. many use the technology to track inventory, prevent theft, or simplify customer service. however, the first connected fragrance took a different approach by focusing first on world building. the fashion brand went beyond simple robot form to create a gateway to online services. therefore, the ghost case study is interesting because the nfc integration first served the customers themselves. when we sat down with paco rabanne, the company explained that they always try to take everyday objects and transform them into something unique. therefore it was only natural for them to turn to nfc as it fits perfectly with their strategies and values.
a tool to build a better world
adding nfc to phantom had other practical values as it allowed paco rabanne to be much more environmentally friendly. in fact, the 5 oz (150 milliliter) version of the fragrance is refillable. the problem is that such a feature is scarce in that industry. as a result, customers are not expecting it and are not familiar with it. By integrating the st25tv02k, the designer can now send users to a video showing how to fill their container. in turn, such a feature will help reduce waste and offer customers incentives to join the ghost environment. so while some may ask why a fragrance needs an nfc tag, phantom demonstrates the need for technology when it comes to delivering a better experience for users and the rest of the world.
another exciting aspect of this case study is that paco rabanne plans to build on its infrastructure. the company is looking for business-oriented features as well as additional services for customers. paco rabanne shared that they were able to focus on fragrance and creating better services and user experiences because they didn’t have to deal with complex technology issues. st and its partners simplified the use and implementation of nfc tags . As a result, the fashion brand’s engineers first created an eau de toilette and expanded its presence with an NFC tag. they didn’t have to work on the label first and create the fragrance around it. as paco rabanne told us, they learned that creating a connected fragrance was not as difficult as they once thought.
ghost: why adding nfc is easier than expected
minimum capital expenditures
Many companies fear that adding digital connectivity will hamper their workflow. As the process is foreign to their operations, they believe it will demand a lot of time, effort, and money. However, the Phantom case study shows the exact opposite. Paco Rabanne itself, a company that never dealt with NFC before, worked with existing teams without ad hoc hires. Their engineers started with an ST25 Tag Bag kit, like the one we used in our iOS App Clip How-to￼. The teams then understood the technology and rapidly created proofs-of-concept with enough features to give a faithful overview of the final product. As a result, the company focused on developing all the web services in-house instead of devoting all resources to the NFC technology itself.
st worked with paco rabanne to make the implementation of nfc as smooth as possible. as a result, our experts collaborated with paragon id, the company responsible for creating the inlay that contains the st25tv02k and its antenna. subsequently, vpi (beauty division of faiveley plast group) conceived and manufactured the robot’s cap to integrate the contactless solution into it. finally, paco rabanne receives the empty containers, checks that everything works and fills them with the fragrance. Interestingly, companies did not have to remodel entire factories, massively transform production lines, or rethink manufacturing. The launch of phantom highlights the maturity of the technology and its ability to integrate existing processes. p >
following the ghost
The ghost case study shows that the public and manufacturing industries are ready for more NFC-enabled products. As a result, the next step for engineers is to start exactly where Paco Rabanne started. Teams can get an ST25 tag bag kit for less than US$30 and download the ST NFC Tap app for iOS and Android. the development solution will allow programmers to write ndef messages and test essential features like type 5 custom commands to create a proof of concept.
- learn more about st25 nfc tags
- see how st is working with partners to bring nfc to more products
- check out paco rabanne’s phantom