Tasker Week: Utilize NFC Triggers!
So you picked up some NFC tags or are considering doing so, but what’s next? You could, of course, set them for boring things such as storing your WiFi password or logging into your phone with Trusted Devices. Or you can set them to trigger just about anything through Tasker!
Here are just a few of the best and most useful day to day tasks you can automate using Tasker and NFC tags.
All the Tasker profiles below require an NFC Tasker Plugin; I use and recommend Locale NFC Plugin for ease of use. You will of course also need an NFC tag per profile. The first step for all these will be the same so I will cover it just once now. If you are using Locale you can stop the phone asking which app you would like to use to read the tag by writing bad://access/development as a custom URL to it, this will ensure that only the Locale plugin can access the app. To do this I recommend the NFC Tools app and the entire process should take just a few seconds (see right). Once you have your tag ready head to Tasker and set up a new profile by tapping the + at the bottom of the page, then press State > Plugin > Locale NFC Plugin. Finally, on the new screen tap the pen by configuration and scan your tag, tick “allow repetitive scan” and you are ready to go!
You get home knowing fine well that one of the first things to do will be to turn on your PC, you’ll have to wait for it to boot, but what if you computer turned on as you walked in the door, ready for when you get to it. Here’s how.
You will require a Wake-On-Lan Tasker Plugin for this, again I use and recommend the Wake On Lan app, it follows Material Design and is incredibly easy to set up. Once you have installed it, open the app and tap the Floating Action Button, this should start to display all the devices on the same network as you, when you see the PC you want to wake’s MAC or IP (which can be found in Windows using the command “ipconfig” in terminal), tap and name it. Back in Tasker add a new task to the profile you created earlier and add a new action: Plugin > Wake On Lan, again tap the pen icon and select the PC you named in the app earlier. You will want to ensure that your PC has Wake on Lan enabled in the bios and finally place your NFC tag near your door. In my case it sits by my key bowl, the first place I go upon entering my house.
This one is brilliant if you have a phone holder or dock in your car, you can stick the NFC tag to the back of it and it will run whenever you place your phone in it, just be sure to deselect repetitive scan when setting up the tag. This profile will vary from person to person depending on their media and navigation app preferences and even on whether your car has Bluetooth built in, but I will share mine here and you can adjust as you need. Add a tag to a new profile and select new task, you will want to add the following which I have split in to three parts here to make it easier to follow:
Turn on Bluetooth and GPS and turn off WiFi (This will require the Secure Settings Plugin)
- Net > BlueTooth and then set to On in the dropdown,
- Net > WiFi and then set to Off in the dropdown,
- Plugin > Secure Settings > Configure > System+ Actions > GPS > On > Save
Turn up Media Volume
- Audio > Media Volume > Select a volume you are happy with
Open navigation and select media when you have chosen a destination
- App > Launch App > Maps (or your preferred navigation app)
- Location > Get Location
- Plugin > Secure Settings > Configuration > Actions > Launch Activity > Google App > [Voice Search] .VoiceSearchActivity > Save
In the new screen, tap the + by IF and in the variable box type 4.4, then select the ~ and change it to “Maths: Less Than”, finally select the value box and type “%LOCSPD”.
This last command will wait until you are driving above 4.4m/s (10 mph) and then launch the Google Now activity, allowing you to say “Play <insert band, playlist or song of your choice here>” You can change the 4.4 variable to the speed of your choice (the units are metres per second) however please be sure to remain safe when driving.
Display Custom App Menu When at Your Desk
Set up the menu overlay
- Alert > Menu > Slide timeout to the right until it says “Never”
- Layout > Icon Grid Menu
- Items > grid > Application Icon > select your chosen app
- Repeat for all desired apps
Keep display on when fully charged
- Display > Display Timeout > Set a desired time, I use 4 hours
- IF > 100% = %BATT
I find this helps me beat procrastination by keeping me focused on just the apps I require for work, selecting an app will close the menu until you place the phone on the tag again.
Of course you can set any Tasker Profile to trigger from an NFC tag here were just a few of the ones I use everyday.
And be sure to check XDA/Android Podcast Episode 15: “Swipe N a Tap and You’ve Got Two Apps” for the chance to win one of 5 LeEco One Pro (SD810)!!!
Do you use NFC tags with Tasker? Leave a comment below