How to tell if you have NFC on your Android smartphone, and how to activate it

NFC or Near Field Communication is a close-range communication standard that is widespread in modern smartphones and tablets. If you have a device with Android, you may want to use NFC to connect your smartphone to a wireless speaker or to make contactless payments. No matter what you want to do using NFC, here is how to check whether you have NFC on your Android device, and how to enable or disable NFC:

IMPORTANT: This guide applies to Android 8 Oreo, Android 7 Nougat, and Android 6 Marshmallow. The procedure is the same in Android 7 and Android 6. In this article, we use three sets of screenshots and instructions: one that applies to a clean version of Android 7 Nougat (on the left), another that refers to a modified version of Android 7 (on the right), and another one for Android 8 Oreo, with its separate screenshots. For the screenshots on the left, we used a Motorola Nexus 6 smartphone, while on the right we used Huawei P10 lite. For the screenshots that apply to Android 8 Oreo, we used a Nexus 6P smartphone. If you do not know what version of Android you have, read this guide and find out: What version of Android do I have? 3 ways of checking!.

Method 1. Search for NFC in the Settings app

This method is the fastest, and it works the same on all Android smartphones and tablets. First, open the Settings app. Then, in the search field on the top, type and search for the word "nfc." If Android returns a search result like NFC or Near Field Communication, then NFC is available on your Android smartphone or tablet.

If you are using Android 8 Oreo, search works the same way. If it does not return any results, then you do not have NFC on your device.

 

If you want to activate NFC, skip the next section in this guide, and follow the instructions shared in the third.

Method 2. Manually look for NFC in your smartphone's settings

A lengthier process involves opening the Settings app first. In Android 7 or older, look for the More button. It is usually found in the Wireless & networks category, or somewhere beneath Bluetooth. Tap More.

If you are using Android 8 Oreo, look for Connected devices and tap on this entry.

Then, you are shown a list with more settings. One of them is name NFC or Near Field Communication. On some devices, NFC has a switch for turning this feature on and off, while on others, it is a category of settings that you need to open. If the latter applies to your device, tap NFC or Near Field Communication to access the available settings.

The same is true in Android 8. You see more settings, and one of them is about NFC, accompanied by a switch.

Turn on NFC on your Android smartphone or tablet

If you want to activate NFC on your Android device, set the NFC switch to On.

The same is valid in Android 8 Oreo.

When you want to deactivate NFC, follow the same procedure for finding NFC-related settings, and set the same switch to Off.

What do you use NFC for?

Now you know how to find out whether your Android smartphone or tablet has NFC on it, and how to turn it On or Off. If you use NFC on your device, before closing this tutorial, share with us what you used it for? Did you connect devices through NFC? Did you make wireless payments? Comment below and let's discuss.