Overviews of NFC chips

Key Distinctions between NFC Tag Types

You are not sure which NFC Tag is the best choice? The reason is probably because there are many important factors to consider when buying NFC Tags. First, the tag must have enough memory capacity for your desired application. However, sometimes more features are required such as a unique identifier (UID), password protection or encryption. In the following we provide you with an overview about NFC Tag Types to assist you in your decision making.

Overview about NFC Forum Tag Types

NFC Tags are categorized into five different tag types based on the specifications of the NFC-Forum. In practice, the read speed of NFC tags is not relevant, thus NFC Type 2 Tags are the most commonly used ones. All NFC-Forum Tags comply with the ISO 14443 or ISO 15693 standard. Learn more about NFC Standards.

  Type 1 Type 2 Type 3 Type 4 Type 5
Memory Capacity (NDEF) 456 bytes 48 bytes up to 2KB 1 KB up to 9 KB 4 KB up to 32 KB 32 bytes up to 256 bytes
Read/Write Speed 106 kbit/s 106 kbit/s 212 kbit/s - 424 kbit/s 106 kbit/s bis 424 kbit/s 53 kbit/s
Read/Write Access Read/Write or Read-Only Read/Write or Read-Only Read/Write or Read-Only Read/Write or Read-Only Read/Write or Read-Only
NFC Tags Broadcom Topaz512

NXP MIFARE Ultralight
NXP MIFARE Ultralight C
NXP NTAG 203
NXP NTAG 213
NXP NTAG 215
NXP NTAG 216

Sony FeliCa NXP DESFire
NXP SmartMX-JCOP
NXP ICODE SLIX

 

Overview about NFC Tags available in our shop

Currently, NFC tags of Type 1 and 2 according to NFC-Forum specification are available in out shop. Furthermore, we offer the MIFARE Classic, which doesn't comply with the specification, but is still often used for applications in the security sector.

In the following table you can find typical NFC Tag Types and their specifications:

  MIFARE Classic MIFARE Ultralight MIFARE Ultralight C NTAG 203

NTAG 213
NTAG 215
NTAG 216

NXP DESFire EV1 Broadcom Topaz 512 NXP ICODE SLIX
Memory Capacity in Byte

(Overall / NDEF)
(1024 / 716)
(4096/ 3056)
 (64 / 48) (192 / 137) (168 / 137) (168 / 137)
(540 / 480)
(924 / 868)
(1-8 Kb) (512 / 456) (133 / 112)
Read-/Write Seed 106 kbit/s 106 kbit/s 106 kbit/s 106 kbit/s 106 kbit/s 106-848 kbit/s 106 kbit/s 53 kbit/s
Read/Write Access Read/Write Read/Write or Read Only Read/Write or Read Only Read/Write or Read Only Read/Write or Read Only Read/Write or Read Only Read/Write or Read Only Read/Write or Read Only
Frequency HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56MHz HF 13.56 MHz
Standards ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A
ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A
ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A
ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A
ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A
ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A
ISO 14 443-2 A
ISO 14 443-3 A

ISO/IEC 15693
ISO/IEC 18000-3

Reach

(depending on transmitter!)
1 - 20 mm 1 - 20 mm 1 - 20 mm 1 - 30 mm 1 - 30 mm 1 - 30 mm 1 - 30 mm bis zu 1.5 m
Manufacturer NXP NXP NXP NXP NXP NXP Broadcom NXP
NFC Forum Type - 2 2 2 2 - (formattable) 1 5
Our products containing this chip type

NFC Sticker
NFC Keyfob

On request On request

Expired

NFC Wristband
NFC Sticker
NFC Keyfob
NFC Magnet

 NFC Sticker

On request

Coming soon

Description of most popular NFC Chips

NXP MIFARE Classic

The MIFARE Classic by NXP doesn't comply with a specification of the NFC-Forum, but with one of NXP's own specifications. Nevertheless, this chip is very popular and often used, for example in canteen cards or ticketing systems. The chip typically has a memory capacity of 1024 bytes (NDEF: 716 bytes), but there are also variants of the Classic chip with up to 4KB memory capacity. The encryption algorithm CRYPTO 1 provides the chip with a decent amount of data security. However, the CRYPTO 1 encryption can't be considered as absolutely secure anymore.

NXP MIFARE Ultralight

As the name suggests, this chip is a light variant of the MIFARE Classic. Due to its small memory capacity of 64 bytes (NDEF: 48 bytes) only small amounts of data can be stored on this chip for example a URL. As this chip doesn't come along with an encryption like the MIFARE Classic, the MIFARE Ultralight isn't suitable for security applications (e.g. access control).

NXP MIFARE Ultralight C

This chip is very similar to the MIFARE Ultralight. The major differences are the larger memory capacity of 168 bytes (NDEF: 144 bytes) and the 3DES encryption algorithm. In contrast to the CRYPTO 1 encryption of the MIFARE Classic, the 3DES encryption is still considered as being secure.

NXP NTAG203

In regards to memory capacity the NXP NTAG203 provides with 168 bytes (NDEF: 137 bytes) a similar amount as the MIFARE Ultralight C. However, this chip has no encryption function and thus, shouldn't be used for security applications.

NXP NTAG213 / NTAG215 / NTAG216

The NTAG213 is the newer version of the NTAG203. Therefore, the NTAG203 expires in our shop and we offer the NTAG213 instead. The new NXP series called NTAG 21x includes the NTAG213, NTAG215 and NTAG216. While the NTAG213 has the smallest memory capacity of 168 bytes (NDEF: 137 bytes), the NTAG 216 has the largest memory capacity of the NTAG21x series with 924 bytes (NDEF: 868 bytes). The memory capacity of the NTAG215 lays in between with 540 bytes (NDEF: 480 bytes). The NTAG21x series supports the UID ASCII Mirror function and a 32bit password protection as well. Furthermore, the chips offer a Counter function, which counts how often the NFC tag has been scanned.

Due to the wide range of functions and the good price-performance ratio the chips belonging to the NTAG21x series are currently the most popular ones on the market.

NXP MIFARE DESFire EV1

The NXP MIFARE DESFire EV1 is the newer version of the MIFARE Classic and was developed for security applications in particular. Therefore, the chips offers a 3DES and AES128 encryption which can is considered as secure to the present time. The tag can be formatted as NFC-Forum Type 2 with NDEF container. The chips allows to store several applications on one chip because every application can be stored in a separate container on the chip. The wide range of functions and the complex structure of the chip lead to a higher price. Thus, the DESFire EV1 is mainly used for applications where security is of high relevance.

Broadcom Topaz512

The Broadcom Topaz512 belongs to NFC-Forum Type 1 and has a memory capacity of 512 bytes (NDEF: 456 bytes).

NXP ICODE SLIX

The NXP ICODE SLIX is ideally suited for intelligent product labeling (e.g. labeling of pharmaceuticals, age-restricted products like alcohol and original products for counterfeit protection). The chip belongs to the NFC-Forum Type 5 and, thus has a greater reach than the aforementioned chips. The NXP ICODE SLIX has a reach of 1.5 m and can be protected with a 32bit password. Furthermore, data can be stored on the chip up to 50 years.

Further Information

Erstellt: 2017-02-16 / Aktualisiert: 2017-09-13 2017-02-16 2017-09-13