iPhone 5 to Have NFC, Mobile Payments, Rumors Say
Been going through iPhone 5 rumor withdrawal lately? Here’s your fix: It looks as if Apple might be including a Near Field Communications (NFC) chip in its next smartphone model.
The NFC chip, which is already available in some Android smartphones, would enable iPhone users to tap their phone to a credit card reader to make an instant mobile payment, among other things. The blog 9to5Mac says it has analyzed hardware code from two new iPhone prototypes and discovered references to an integrated NFC chip and antenna.
Included in iOS 6, the next version of Apple’s mobile operating system, is an app called Passbook, which lets users easily access loyalty cards (from Starbucks or other merchants). The thinking is that Passbook would have the NFC capabilities.
Apple’s digital wallet technology would compete against Google Wallet, which works with Android phones that have NFC chips such as Samsung’s new Galaxy S III. Microsoft has also announced NFC wallet service with its upcoming Windows Phone 8 mobile OS.
It’s no surprise to Apple watchers that the company may introduce an NFC-capable iPhone 5 this fall. The rumors about this have swirled about before, and Apple is said to have been working on NFC integration for a while now.