No near-field communications chip in Apple's next iPhone - report

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Apple will not include an RFID near-field communications chip for e-wallet transactions in its anticipated fifth-generation iPhone, a new report claims.



Wall Street research firm Bernstein issued a note to investors on Monday in which it claimed the next iPhone won't include an NFC chip, according to Business Insider. That would run contrary to previous rumors that Apple was planning to include such a chip in its next iPhone.



Numerous reports from various sources had suggested that Apple planned to include NFC chips for e-wallet functionality in its next iPhone. Wireless short-range technology like RFID can allow for secure transmission of data, and could turn a user's smartphone into a credit card.



In March, The New York Times also reported that Apple was planning e-wallet functionality for a "coming" iPhone. However, the newspaper could not confirm whether the functionality would appear in Apple's fifth-generation iPhone.



Apple has shown a great deal of interest in RFID over the years, with numerous patent filings, job listings, and even public comments from mobile executives. Reports of iPhone prototypes with RFID functionality date back to 2009.



If true, Monday's report could mean that users would have to wait until at least the sixth-generation iPhone, likely to arrive in 2012, before such functionality would become available. That would jibe with other rumors that the next iPhone will not feature any significant changes to its hardware.



It would also support a claim out of the U.K. made in March that said RFID functionality had been scrapped. The Independent cited sources at mobile operators who said that Apple plans to include NFC technology in the sixth-generation iPhone in 2012.



Last week, a separate analyst report claimed that the biggest feature of Apple's fifth-generation handset, given the moniker "iPhone 4S," will be support for both Sprint and T-Mobile networks in the U.S. It is also expected to feature better cameras and the dual-core A5 processor found in the iPad 2.



Over the weekend, a separate part and case claimed to be for the fifth-generation iPhone suggested that the camera flash on the rear of the device will be placed farther from the lens. This would allow for better pictures when taken in low lighting.



Apple's next iPhone is widely expected to miss the traditional summer launch timeframe when previous devices have been introduced. Instead, it is believed that the next iPhone will arrive at some point in Apple's 2012 fiscal year, which begins in late September.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 45
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,772member
    Don't expect me to purchase a new Iphone if it doesn't have an NFC chip in it. I don't see a reason too otherwise. Apple is falling a year behind Google in this area if this report is indeed true.
  • Reply 2 of 45
    brutus009brutus009 Posts: 356member
    Coming from the 3GS, a hardware bump is all I'm looking for. I'm downright excited about the beefy camera!
  • Reply 3 of 45
    bsimpsenbsimpsen Posts: 272member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AdonisSMU View Post


    Don't expect me to purchase a new Iphone if it doesn't have an NFC chip in it. I don't see a reason too otherwise. Apple is falling a year behind Google in this area if this report is indeed true.



    Until the necessary infrastructure and licensing agreements are in place, what can you do with NFC? I know some Google phones have it, but is anybody using it?



    I think the inclusion of NFC in the phone is the last piece of a big puzzle.
  • Reply 4 of 45
    d-ranged-range Posts: 396member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AdonisSMU View Post


    Don't expect me to purchase a new Iphone if it doesn't have an NFC chip in it. I don't see a reason too otherwise. Apple is falling a year behind Google in this area if this report is indeed true.



    Is NFC really that important to you? I personally don't expect NFC with phones to really take off for at least another year or two. There is not really a standard with industry wide support, no standardized infrastructure, no actual market pull from consumers, and for now, no one even seems to have a clear and comprehensive strategy for NFC applications. It's all nice and dandy that some Android phones throw in an NFC chip, but what good is it if you can't do anything with it?



    Don't get me wrong, I still think you could do a lot of really interesting stuff with NFC, and I see phones replacing chipcards for all kinds of things. Just not within a year or two. Too many parties involved, and no one seems to work together to get some show on the road, to reach the critical mass required for any NFC standard for phones to really take off.
  • Reply 5 of 45
    brutus009brutus009 Posts: 356member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bsimpsen View Post


    Until the necessary infrastructure and licensing agreements are in place, what can you do with NFC? I know some Google phones have it, but is anybody using it?



    I think the inclusion of NFC in the phone is the last piece of a big puzzle.



    I agree.

    NFC will be useful when my phone can function as my primary form of ID: my license.

    Then I can do away with my wallet entirely.
  • Reply 6 of 45
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,439member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by d-range View Post


    Is NFC really that important to you? I personally don't expect NFC to really take off for at least another year or two. There is not really a standard with industry wide support, no standardized infrastructure, no actual market pull from consumers, and for now, no one even seems to have a clear and comprehensive strategy for NFC applications. It's all nice and dandy that some Android phones throw in an NFC chip, but what good is it if you can't do anything with it?



    Don't get me wrong, I still think you could do a lot of really interesting stuff with NFC, and I see phones replacing chipcards for all kinds of things. Just not within a year or two. Too many parties involved, and no one seems to work together to get some show on the road, to reach the critical mass required for any NFC standard for phones to really take off.



    Perhaps the chipset will be there for NFC, just not functional when shipped. At least buyers of the 4S/iPhone5 wouldn't have to do without if/when Apple includes the feature next year.
  • Reply 7 of 45
    walshbjwalshbj Posts: 864member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AdonisSMU View Post


    Don't expect me to purchase a new Iphone if it doesn't have an NFC chip in it. I don't see a reason too otherwise. Apple is falling a year behind Google in this area if this report is indeed true.





    Not worrisome to me. You can say Apple was behind on tablets and it didn't really hurt. Late to smartphones - not a problem. MS has been in smartphones forever - but they need to be joined to Nokia at the hip just to keep their head above water. MS lacks the ability to catch up. Apple doesn't have that problem. They'll package NFC in a way nobody else does and gain share through their integrated service.



    Still long on aapl. Ss others said, NFC is a developing story, the pieces aren't in place yet. Apple doesn't need to be first, just like they weren't first with 3G phones.
  • Reply 8 of 45
    macinthe408macinthe408 Posts: 1,050member
    It's a shame Apple doesn't jump on the bandwagon for whatever the latest technology darling is at the moment. I wish they would use their customers as guinea pigs, releasing untested technology as soon as it comes out.



    We want products that don't work. Even the Nexus S has an NFC chip that can't be used anywhere. What's wrong with that? They should have put a forward-facing camera even before their FaceTime app was ready to go. Throw it in there first and see what sticks.



    It's a shame. There are a lot of consumers out there who want to have products that don't work yet just so they can show and tell their friends that they have the latest gizmo that serves a purpose to no one except their own egos.



    Such a shame. Now the Google Nexus S can be first to the NFC party, a party that has a total of zero people in attendance and no drinks being served and a absent DJ.
  • Reply 9 of 45
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,439member
    NFC will have uses beyond payments too. Somewhere I saw a demonstration of file transfer between mobile devices using the technology. And one of the major university's had a demonstration linking web tv to your television using NFC and your TV remote.



    At least some of these guys are thinking outside the box.
  • Reply 10 of 45
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,772member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by walshbj View Post


    Not worrisome to me. You can say Apple was behind on tablets and it didn't really hurt. Late to smartphones - not a problem. MS has been in smartphones forever - but they need to be joined to Nokia at the hip just to keep their head above water. MS lacks the ability to catch up. Apple doesn't have that problem. They'll package NFC in a way nobody else does and gain share through their integrated service.



    Still long on aapl. Ss others said, NFC is a developing story, the pieces aren't in place yet. Apple doesn't need to be first, just like they weren't first with 3G phones.



    My statement was about not having an interest in buying another Iphone until the NFC chip is put in....over the air updates for IOS and an overhaul of Itunes would be nice while they are at it.
  • Reply 11 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AdonisSMU View Post


    Don't expect me to purchase a new Iphone if it doesn't have an NFC chip in it. I don't see a reason too otherwise. Apple is falling a year behind Google in this area if this report is indeed true.



    Apple didn't make the first MP3 player, smartphone, or tablet, either. Doing it a bit later but doing it better than anyone else seems to have worked out fairly well for them, no?
  • Reply 12 of 45
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,772member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by walshbj View Post


    Not worrisome to me. You can say Apple was behind on tablets and it didn't really hurt. Late to smartphones - not a problem. MS has been in smartphones forever - but they need to be joined to Nokia at the hip just to keep their head above water. MS lacks the ability to catch up. Apple doesn't have that problem. They'll package NFC in a way nobody else does and gain share through their integrated service.



    Still long on aapl. Ss others said, NFC is a developing story, the pieces aren't in place yet. Apple doesn't need to be first, just like they weren't first with 3G phones.



    I agree that it's better to be better than it is to be first.
  • Reply 13 of 45
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,788member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AdonisSMU View Post


    Don't expect me to purchase a new Iphone if it doesn't have an NFC chip in it. I don't see a reason too otherwise. Apple is falling a year behind Google in this area if this report is indeed true.



    Nearly any random bunch of hardware engineers (e.g. HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Nokia) can mash together a droid with lots of hardware features. But then it falls on Google to actually write code to use those features. And that's Android's second biggest problem. (The Oracle lawsuit being big problem number one.)



    Some of the generic droid makers farted out a phone that had a front-facing camera for video calls. Google failed to provide software that could use it. Clear evidence of Google's public-alpha mentality. For more evidence, Google "Google Wave" and "Google TV."



    Or, better yet, don't Google them. Just go straight to Wikipedia.



    [Update: macinthe408 points out that the Nexus S has an NFC chip that is languishing from lack of software to take advantage of its magical powers. No wonder it wasn't good enough to be called "Nexus 2."]
  • Reply 14 of 45
    walshbjwalshbj Posts: 864member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AdonisSMU View Post


    My statement was about not having an interest in buying another Iphone until the NFC chip is put in....over the air updates for IOS and an overhaul of Itunes would be nice while they are at it.



    iTunes needs an overhaul, and better support for keeping parts of your library on different drives. In particular, it would be nice if it was "drive-aware" in the interface, so you could select a bunch of media and designate a drive for it right in the Get Info panel. Sort of like some of the photo libraries that let you have offline content.



    And wifi sync !!
  • Reply 15 of 45
    prof. peabodyprof. peabody Posts: 2,860member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by walshbj View Post


    iTunes needs an overhaul, and better support for keeping parts of your library on different drives. In particular, it would be nice if it was "drive-aware" in the interface, so you could select a bunch of media and designate a drive for it right in the Get Info panel. Sort of like some of the photo libraries that let you have offline content. ...



    I don't think it needs to be "drive aware" at all. The whole point of a media library is that it allows the user to manage the media without needing to know about drives. The average user doesn't (or shouldn't) need to know anything about what kind of physical drives are in their computer.



    On the other hand, iTunes certainly needs to be better at managing the library, and finding it when it moves to a different drive is a part of that. I'd also like to see it be able to handle more than one library. Especially with home sharing, you have to designate one master computer in the home to store all the media for the household when in fact, you probably want to have one library for that and other libraries for other uses.



    iTunes forces you to have everything in one massive library when in fact you probably want one for the kids and one for the adults at minimum. I also don't like storing movies that I take myself in the same spot as commercial movies I've bought and paid for. Multiple libraries and easy management of them is something sorely lacking IMO.
  • Reply 16 of 45
    walshbjwalshbj Posts: 864member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    I don't think it needs to be "drive aware" at all. The whole point of a media library is that it allows the user to manage the media without needing to know about drives. The average user doesn't (or shouldn't) need to know anything about what kind of physical drives are in their computer.



    On the other hand, iTunes certainly needs to be better at managing the library, and finding it when it moves to a different drive is a part of that. I'd also like to see it be able to handle more than one library. Especially with home sharing, you have to designate one master computer in the home to store all the media for the household when in fact, you probably want to have one library for that and other libraries for other uses.



    iTunes forces you to have everything in one massive library when in fact you probably want one for the kids and one for the adults at minimum. I also don't like storing movies that I take myself in the same spot as commercial movies I've bought and paid for. Multiple libraries and easy management of them is something sorely lacking IMO.



    If it were drive-aware I could put certain content that I rarely access on an external drive, easily. I don't like having my whole library on an external because there's lag.



    Not sure what your point is, but I'd prefer more features instead of less. It can be done discretely so that "average users" don't have to see it.



    Libraries are getting large with video content. The i7 iMac I just bought has a 2TB drive. My library will take up a very large chunk of that. I'd like to be able to easily migrate some of the content to an external. Just because you don't have that need doesn't mean it wouldn't be an extremely useful feature.



    And yes, I know it can be done manually, that's not what I want to do.
  • Reply 17 of 45
    prof. peabodyprof. peabody Posts: 2,860member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by walshbj View Post


    If it were drive-aware I could put certain content that I rarely access on an external drive, easily. I don't like having my whole library on an external because there's lag.



    Not sure what your point is, but I'd prefer more features instead of less. It can be done discretely so that "average users" don't have to see it.



    Libraries are getting large with video content. The i7 iMac I just bought has a 2TB drive. My library will take up a very large chunk of that. I'd like to be able to easily migrate some of the content to an external. Just because you don't have that need doesn't mean it wouldn't be an extremely useful feature.



    And yes, I know it can be done manually, that's not what I want to do.



    I know what you're saying. I just meant that the whole point of the software is for the user not to have to manage the files, folders, and drives. If you are moving things from drive to drive, you might as well be doing it manually.



    I'm not saying it's right or wrong or that I wouldn't mind manual management myself, just that it's asking the product to do something that it was specifically designed to avoid.
  • Reply 18 of 45
    walshbjwalshbj Posts: 864member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    I know what you're saying. I just meant that the whole point of the software is for the user not to have to manage the files, folders, and drives. If you are moving things from drive to drive, you might as well be doing it manually.



    I'm not saying it's right or wrong or that I wouldn't mind manual management myself, just that it's asking the product to do something that it was specifically designed to avoid.



    Well - we've gone off topic and I'll have to agree to disagree. iTunes has come a long way from where it started. Now it manages video, podcasts, apps, Apple TV and multiple iOS devices.



    I maintain that such a product - when there aren't really alternatives - needs to become more powerful and flexible as part of its evolution.
  • Reply 19 of 45
    boeyc15boeyc15 Posts: 986member
    Just bring the next phone! 'NFC? We dont have any NFC. We dont need no stinking NFC.'
  • Reply 20 of 45
    koheletkohelet Posts: 58member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    I know what you're saying. I just meant that the whole point of the software is for the user not to have to manage the files, folders, and drives. If you are moving things from drive to drive, you might as well be doing it manually.



    I'm not saying it's right or wrong or that I wouldn't mind manual management myself, just that it's asking the product to do something that it was specifically designed to avoid.



    You can manually manage media. just uncheck 'copy to itunes media folder'
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