In a piece from today about rival buyers wooing FreescaleSemiconductor (NASDAQ:FSL), I speculated that one long-term application that might attract suitors is the ability to combine Freescale's non-volatile memory technology with existing semiconductor chips to build cell phones that can "read RFID [radio frequency identification] chips embedded in products at your local grocery store."

Just an hour after submitting the story, I was surprised to come across a little nugget at's science site. It suggested that in Japan, McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) is already embedding "quick response" codes in its wrappers: two-dimensional bar codes that permit the coding of binary, Kanji -- a form of Japanese writing -- and alphanumeric information. The chips, which can be read by cell phones, help Japanese consumers "read" the nutritional labels.

The move is noteworthy for two reasons. First, although Japanese consumers are ahead of Americans and others in using cell phones for things other than making phone calls, the rest of the world is rapidly catching up. And, by getting a jump on the technology, McDonald's should be able to get a leg up on competitors -- such as Burger King (NYSE:BKC) -- in rolling out comparable items around the world. McDonald's could use the technology to not only reinforce its new "healthy" brand image (by allowing customers to count calories with their cell phones), but also to help deliver additional content, promotions, and advertisements to its customers.

For instance, my kids are always clamoring to go to McDonald's to get their grubby little hands on the latest movie-related promotional toy from Disney (NYSE:DIS) or its Pixar arm. With this technology, it wouldn't be a stretch for McDonald's to team up with movie studios to also offer an electronic coupon that could be redeemed at a nearby theater.

The news is also important because it suggests that Freescale's potential to capitalize on the value of combining RFID technology and cell phones is nearer than I originally imagined. As a result, I am even more confident that the value for Freescale will increase over the near term.

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Fool contributor Jack Uldrich owns stock in Freescale. The Fool has a chip-proof disclosure policy.