Creative Soccer Culture

How Does The 2018 adidas Telstar NFC Ball Work?

So the new adidas Telstar match ball for the 2018 World Cup has a microchip inside it? Yep. But, what for? Good question. Let us explain what exactly the new NFC "Near Field Communication" technology does. Take a seat.

First thing to clear up is that this isn't the same as the adidas micoach Smart Ball. The NFC tech won't measure your shot power, curl and pass speed – It ain't quite as smart as that. NFC is a digital technology that allows two devices to exchange data,and in this case you can unlock adidas stuff on your phone once connected. The chip? It's located at the top of the ball, under the little wifi-esque symbol. But you already worked that out.

So how does it work?

Ah yeah, that's why you're here. Well, the NFC enabled device (smartphone) sends radio frequency signals that interact with the NFC tag (inserted inside the Telstar 18 ball). The signal allows your phone to communicate with the tag. Your phone will receive the information from the tag, which will then open the Telstar 18 experience.

How does it work on Android?

Make sure your phone is unlocked and NFC is enabled by swiping down the control center from the top of the screen, or open your Android's settings and activate NFC on the ""Wireless and Networks"" option. Tap the back of your phone onto the NFC logo on the Telstar 18 surface to launch the experience.

And iPhone?

Yep, it works on iPhone too. But only iPhone7/7Plus, iPhone 8/8Plus and iPhone X with iOS11 or newer installed, are enabled to read NFC tags. iOS doesn't have a native functionality to read these tags, so you'll have to download a third party app and use that. Just search NFC tag and you'll find one. There's loads.

Do I need an app?

No. There's no adidas Telstar NFC App so to speak. You'll just need an NFC-reading app if you've got an iPhone.

Got it. So, what is the experience about?

The experience offers different functionalities like exclusive information about the product and adidas football content. Not that exciting, right? But it does also offer special competitions and challenges. You can film yourself doing these challenges with the ball and upload them. Plus features will be updated in the run up to the World Cup, so keep tagging.

Pick up the adidas Telstar 2018 World Cup Ball at


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