Smart contract company, Clause, has partnered with a leading NFC (near field communication) company to link it to its own self-executing legal contracting technology. The move is in line with some of the earliest work of Clause, which related to picking up signals from the environment that could trigger elements of a smart contract.
The deal sees Thin Film Electronics, also known as Thinfilm, work together with Clause to use NFC to facilitate the pairing of physical goods to digital contracts through the tap of a smartphone.
Near–field communication (NFC) is a set of communication protocols that enable two electronic devices, one of which is usually a portable device such as a smartphone, to establish communication by bringing them within 4 cm (1.6 in) of each other (ref).
The resulting connection will deliver ‘key functional and efficiency improvements for customers across the Clause connected contracting platform, including contract creation and management, supply chain administration, and invoice/payment automation’, said the companies.
This would appear to be a big deal, as logistics and transportation have long been held out as real world examples where smart contracts really can make a rapid difference in that they can respond to signals related to the position, movement, or even physical condition of goods.
Thinfilm will also integrate Clause’s connected contracting solution with its Cloud Platform, making it available to existing and prospective customers. The solution will also position Thinfilm’s CNECT Blockchain Services as an optional security feature, to authenticate products, confirm deliveries, review supply chain routes, and verify the provenance of goods.
Using a tap of a smartphone can then store relevant information in the CNECT blockchain, allowing customers to leverage transactional history to automate a range of functions, including contract execution and payment triggers.
Houman Shadab, CEO of Clause, said: ‘At Clause we make legal contracts ‘come alive’ through connections to external data sources and enterprise software systems. We saw Thinfilm’s NFC technology as an innovative and highly effective way to facilitate a connection to the physical world while empowering customers to digitize, automate, and monitor the shipment and delivery of goods in real time.’
Davor Sutija, CEO of Thinfilm, added: ‘Both Clause and Thinfilm are intently focused on delivering value by connecting the physical and digital worlds. We believe customers will greatly benefit from the enhanced ‘smart contracts’ solution, and we look forward to working closely with the Clause team.’