The NFC iPhone Rumors Keep Getting Hotter
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com
When Apple announced Passbook during this year’s WWDC keynote, they weren’t just announcing a new, really cool app. It has been widely estimated and expected that the company was hinting at future capabilities and creating more questions than answers as they went along. With Passbook, iPhone users can store all their digital tickets and stubs in one place. Boarding tickets, movie tickets, even gift cards can be stored in one place. With geo-fencing, the app even knows when you are at the airport or the theater and will pull up the corresponding ticket accordingly. One of the louder questions which arose after this announcement was “So, does this mean the next iPhone will come with NFC capabilities?”
If the team at 9to5mac.com are right, it will.
The site had previously mentioned receiving details about a prototype iPhone in the testing phases. While they had already listed some design and hardware specs, the site says today they “forgot one very important little bit of information.”
While Passbook by itself could allow for mobile payments via scanning the screen — much like many current applications — the addition of NFC could allow for payment as well as the transfer of data with contact-less payment systems. Those who have been watching the iPhone for a few years already know this is far from the first time the NFC rumor has popped up. Many rumor sites — and even some reputable news sources — have claimed the “next” iPhone will have these capabilities. In fact, the rumors had reached such a level of credibility that last year, the New York Times claimed a “coming iteration of the Apple iPhone-although not necessarily the next one” will be packing some NFC heat.
Though not quite as potentially revolutionary as mobile payments, NFC could also provide fellow iPhone users to share files and information from one iOS device to another.
Besides 9 to 5 Mac’s “forgotten” realization that the next iPhone will have NFC, other experts and professionals are saying they’re counting on the next iPhone to take over in this space.
According to Jim Peters, CTO at SITA, Apple could be a sleeper candidate for this new technology. “There aren’t any transactions in it yet, but I think that’s how Apple is going to sneak up on the industry. They are going to get people used to using it and then all of a sudden they will allow credit cards to be used in there, on the next iPhone, which will include NFC,” he told Computer World India.
While Apple rarely hints at new products and functionalities so far out in their pipeline, it was seemingly strategic for Tim Cook to announce iTunes currently has 400 million iTunes accounts. While he almost certainly touted this number as a way to impress the developers in the crowd, it’s also likely he was nodding to companies like Google and Samsung, saying, “We’ve got our hands on the switch, and when we decide to flip it, you’ll be sorry.”
The next iPhone is expected to launch this fall.