Major banks and telecommunications companies have been working on “digital wallets” for some time now. The idea of being able to swipe your smart phone (instead of bank/credit card) to make a purchase.
In the spring of 2012 the Canadian Bankers Association published guidelines on how the financial and telecom industries can collaborate on the project, and paypal Canada conducted a poll that showed 56% of Canadians would embrace this technology.
So would it be a big surprise that Apple would add this feature to the iPhone 5? No, and leaked photographs show that the new phones will have it.
As reported by AppleInsider, Chinese website Apple.pro this weekend posted photos that claim to show the front of the iPhone 5. We’ve seen this before, but the Apple.pro photos are interesting in that they seem to show off an NFC chip near the iPhone’s camera.
The size of that chip is reportedly similar to the dimensions of current NFC chips.
NFC within the iPhone would allow for mobile payments. Apple hinted at some e-payment capabilities within iOS 6 during WWDC when it unveiled Passbook, which lets users store electronic versions of things like airline boarding passes, movie tickets, retail coupons, and loyalty cards.
Rumors about NFC within the iPhone, of course, have been making the rounds for quite some time. There were even reports it would be included in the iPhone 4S, but that didn’t happen.
Some forward-thinking techies are already swiping their smartphone to pay for things, but mobile payments haven’t really taken off with the masses here in the U.S. However, some 65 percent of experts surveyed earlier this year said they think most people will fully adopt mobile payments by 2020, nearly eliminating the need for cash or credit cards.
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Here is one of the pictures available from apple.pro Note: Website is in Chinese