The following diagram provides a high-level view of the NFC architecture in a BlackBerry 10 device.
The key components depicted here are:
- NFC antenna: NFC radio communications requires an antenna in the NFC device.
- NFC controller: Consists of a Hardware Controller Interface (HCI) and an NFC modem. This component interfaces with the NFC antenna and redirects the radio frequency (RF) communication to the currently selected Secure Element. It's the key piece of hardware that gives your BlackBerry smartphone its NFC capabilities. The NFC modem is sometimes termed the CLF or Contactless Front End. It's responsible for communication via radio with an external NFC reader.
- Secure Element (SE): Consists of hardware and a smart card operating system, and is capable of running small applications known as applets. The SE provides a secure, tamperproof environment for running applets. Applications on the BlackBerry smartphone can interact with such applets using one of the NFC APIs. Applets can also interact with components such as NFC reader terminals (e.g., point-of-sale terminals) using one of the key NFC communication protocols plus a suitable application-layer protocol. The SE resides in the Universal Integrated Circuit Card (UICC), if your UICC is issued with an SE.
- NFC stack: Consists of a series of APIs that applications can use.