“When Apple revealed the iPhone 5 last year, many were confused as to why Apple didn’t include NFC technology,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple.

“Apple’s VP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller stated at the time that it wasn’t clear that NFC was the solution to any current problem,” Purcher reports. “That was a nice misdirection Phil, really. Because as Phil was saying that, Apple had already filed for a wild fingerprint sensor/NFC patent that he was fully aware of.”

Patently Apple recently discovered this patent application in Europe that details an incredible fingerprint scanner with advanced integrated NFC circuitry that will deliver features that no one saw coming!” Purcher reports. “It appears that Apple is about to show the world a little more true innovation Apple-style next week when they introduce the iPhone 5S with a newly designed Home Button with an integrated fingerprint scanner and much more.”

Apple's next patent FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional side view of the new Home button.

Apple’s next patent FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional side view of the new Home button.

 
Much more in the full article – highly recommended – here.

MacDailyNews Take: We’ve seen that ring in leaked photos out of China that claim to be of iPhone 5S’ packaging showing a new Home Button:

iPhone 5S packaging featuring new Home Button design

iPhone 5S packaging featuring new Home Button design

 
This patent application is well-worth reading – it may well give many clues as to what’s to come next week and/or in the future.

Related articles:
Leaked iPhone 5S home button images strongly suggest fingerprint scanner – September 5, 2013
Photos claim to show iPhone 5S packaging featuring Home Button fingerprint sensor – September 6, 2013
Apple ‘iPhone 5S’ to feature sapphire crystal capacitive touch Home button with fingerprint sensor, says source – May 14, 2013
Analyst: Apple’s next-gen iPhone’s Home button fingerprint sensor would be difficult for rivals to copy – January 16, 2013