RUMOR: Apple rejects NFC ‘wave and pay’ for new iPhone

“Apple will not include ‘wave and pay’ chips in the new iPhone to be released later this year, dashing industry hopes that a universal standard for the technology would be adopted in 2011,” Nick Clark reports for The Independent.

“Sources at several of the largest mobile operators in the UK revealed Apple had disclosed in meetings that it would not be including Near Field Communication (NFC) technology – which enables payment for products with a wave of your phone on a reader – in the latest version of the iPhone, be it the iPhone 4GS or the iPhone 5,” Clark reports.

“One source close to the discussions said: ‘The new iPhone will not have NFC, Apple told the operators it was concerned by the lack of a clear standard across the industry.’ Yet Apple is understood to be working on its own NFC proposition, which would link payments through iTunes,” Clark reports. “It hopes to introduce the technology in a handset likely to be released next year.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The rumored rumor.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “David G.” for the heads up.]


  1. Apple will very much want to be at the forefront of NFC. They’ll ride this train to hell & back. Think of it: how in the world will Apple be able to nickel & dime us all to death with 99¢ ringtones, 99¢ FaceTime for Mac & $99 Mobile Me if they don’t extend their reach to Starbucks for a 30% cut out of every cup of coffee you consume.

  2. I would think that everyone would want Apple to be extra careful with this stuff. Remember it is a direct route to your credit card. And think about the scammers who use devices to read people’s new credit cards in public places. Apple will surely want this ability to be turned-off.

  3. The problem with this is that Apple already pulls from your credit card which already charged 2-5% per transaction.

    Apple currently pays that out of their 30% share.

    If Apple wants to become an industry standard with Wave and Pay they can’t charge anymore then the credit card companies, and they have to find a way to split that small percentage with the credit card companies and make it profitable for both.

  4. Direct connect to your bank account. This technology threatens companies like Visa/PayPal/MC. You don’t mess with someone’s livelyhood.. Especially a trillion dollar lively hood..

  5. For those talking about going after the 30% margin Apple gets with the record companies.. This is different. Apple wants to compete with CC companies for that 1.5-2.5% fee. Much more $$ but smaller percentage.

  6. @ gbs:

    You got it. Apple SHOULD understand (we might be seeing what corporate eyes, alas, cannot) that the money to be made here is in the volume of purchases made, not the percentage. And that, in fact, undercutting the credit card companies by any significant amount will draw any rational businesses to them for the same reason. What seller could pass up a payment system that costs them something like half as much? Any substantial savings on their part would, along with Apple’s product popularity, all but ensure rapid deployment of the system. Convenience and a better deal than just debt-based credit cards for consumers would do the rest.

    The question is, would/could Apple actually make it a better deal for the public too?

    Obviously, having to lay out the dough for an ‘iDevice’ is a steeper cost of entry than simply applying for a credit card. I see no way around that. However, as I said in another post, Apple could do something really balls-y.

    Yeah, you could pay with your card that’s on file with Apple. But what about all the gift cards Apple sells?

    I tend to buy a $15 gift card every month or so. I never use it all, so I carry a balance – often one that increases for a while until I go on a ‘spree’. What if I could use those funds to buy stuff at Walmart? Publix? Foot Locker? It would be like having a debit card. The advantage for me is that I would never pay an interest rate, never go in debt to consume (the same as with regular debit cards, but I wouldn’t have to carry a card). The advantage for Apple is that they could EARN interest on that money until I get around to using it, as they do already with gift cards. The difference is I currently only carry about $15-30 at a time. Since I’m only buying the occasional $1-5 App/iTunes Store purchase there’s no need for more (at least until I get into buying Mac software, which are pricier). Yet I can tell you right now that my balance amount would be higher – much higher – if I could buy stuff outside the Apple-verse with it. Think about if Apple let me save enough to buy an new HDTV. Or iMac? They get the best of both worlds if I do the latter! Of course, if I do buy something ‘on the outside’, Apple will also get the 1.5% (or less) they’ll charge the business for the transaction, so it’s never less than ‘Win/Win’ for them.

    To recap: Apple makes a profit if I buy something from them through this mechanism (as they would whenever they sell something), or if I buy from some other business (through a more nominal transaction fee than is currently charged by credit card companies), or if I buy NOTHING and just let the cash sit with them (via the interest they will earn by simply holding my – and millions of other people’s – money in some liquid account).

    If Apple did this right – i.e. NOT GET TOO GREEDY – they would essentially be printing money for themselves, just from this one common-sense option that a NFC purchasing system run by them provides.

  7. Another dopey rumor killed. And I am very glad it was. At this point in time, NFC is nothing but trouble. Not interested. Don’t want it. I’d remove it if you gave it to me. Go fix it first then get back to me…

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