Automatic reminder of an expiration date using NFC tags

Total time: 10 Minutes

Every now and then it happens that food spoils in the kitchen because it has been forgotten or overlooked. This can happen, but it is annoying and wasteful. In order to prevent this from happening, the expiry date should be observed and food that does not have a long shelf life should be processed quickly.

Writing down expiration dates can help, but these notes also need to be reminded again. It would be best if the phone automatically sends a push message when the expiration date is approaching.

An NFC tag can help. For example, an NFC sticker can be placed on a container. If this container is filled with perishable food, scanning an NFC sticker can be used to record the current date, the name of the food and, above all, the expiry date in a reminder. The smartphone will then send you an expiry reminder on this date. This process can be repeated countless times, so once the NFC sticker has been scanned, you will never have to remind yourself of the expiration date again.

In this article we explain how to create such a sticker using Apple's free app Shortcuts and our free app NFC21 Tools. If you want to download the finished shortcut directly and save it on the NFC sticker, skip to the end of this article.

Create the shortcut: What do you want to be reminded of?

First we create a new shortcut in the app Shortcuts. To do this, we tap on + Create Shortcut and name it with expiration reminder by clicking on the ... symbol in the top right-hand corner. Then we tap on + → type input and select Ask for Input. By tapping on Question, you enter the query that should appear first when you scan the NFC tag, in our case What should be reminded? Next, tap + → again, enter Variable above and select Set Variable. Now we tap on Variable Name and type var.

  • 1. Create the shortcut: What do you want to be reminded of?
  • 2. Create the shortcut: What do you want to be reminded of?

Create shortcut: Set expiration date

In this step we set the entry of the expiry date. To do this, we go to + → enter input → select Ask for Input. Again we tap on question and type "When is the expiration date?".

Now we only have to tap on Show more and select Date next to Input type.

Create shortcut: Set expiration date

Create shortcut: Set Reminder

To finally create a reminder with our input we add a reminder by typing + → type reminder → select Add a reminder. We configure it as follows: We tap on Reminder and then select the small orange symbol in the bar above the keyboard and enter "expired". On the right side we can select a desired list in our reminders. For the sake of clarity, we have previously created a list with the name "To-Do".

Now we tap on No Alert and select Alert. Finally we tap on 02:00 pm and select provided Input.

Create shortcut: Set Reminder

Save short command and save to NFC tag

Bevor Sie den Kurzbefehl speichern, können sie Ihn durch das Symbol testen. Danach speichern Sie den Kurzbefehl durch Fertig.

Um den Kurzbefehl schließlich auf einem NFC-Tag zu speichern öffnen Sie NFC21 ToolsTag TypenNeuer Kurzbefehl Tag. In dem Textfeld geben Sie den Namen des Kurzbefehls ein (Ablauferinnerung) und speichern diesen durch Auf NFC Tag speichern auf dem NFC Tag.

Before you save the shortcut, you can test it by clicking the icon. After that, save the shortcut by clicking Done.

Finally, to save the shortcut to an NFC tag, open NFC21 ToolsTag-TypesShortcut. In the text field, enter the name of the shortcut (expiration reminder) and save it to the NFC tag by clicking Write to NFC tag.

Save short command and save to NFC tag

Download shortcut

With this How2 we have explained how to create your own shortcut and save it on an NFC tab. The created shortcut prompts you to enter a reminder object and an expiration date when scanning to automatically create a reminder based on this input.

If you do not want to create the steps yourself, but would like to download the finished shortcut directly, follow this link. In this case the shortcut only needs to be saved on the NFC tag, as explained in the previous step.

Download shortcut

In this How2 we have explained how an NFC tag can automatically create and name a reminder tag. Of course, this use case can be applied to everything and not only to expiration dates of food. For example, it is also possible to stick such an NFC tag next to the washing machine, which then creates a timer until the machine has finished running. How to create a timer using an NFC tag is explained here.

Read in further How2 how you can still make your life easier by using NFC!

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