Apple’s iPhone 6 line will sport new A8 chip, faster Wi-Fi, improved Touch ID, and NFC

“As rumored, Apple will release two new phones this fall, one with a 4.7-inch screen and another with a large 5.5-inch screen, a VentureBeat source with knowledge of the plans says,” Mark Sullivan reports for VentureBeat. “However, the 4.7-inch model will be ready to ship mid-September, our source says, while the 5.5-inch model is likely to ship several weeks or even a month later.”

“Our source says the screens are made of an extremely hard material that’s slightly harder than Gorilla Glass but not as hard as sapphire,” Sullivan reports. “That corroborates an earlier video report showing that the purported iPhone 6 screen is harder than previous models’ screens but softer than sapphire crystal.”

“Our source confirms that the upcoming iPhones will contain the new A8 chip. The A8 will run at a frequency of 2.0 GHz per core and will create noticeably faster response time and graphics rendering in the new phones, the source says,” Sullivan reports. “The new phones will support a faster flavor of Wi-Fi, 802.11ac. As in earlier iPhones, the Wi-Fi chip will come from Broadcom.”

iPhone 6 artist's conception by Martin Hajek
iPhone 6 artist’s conception by Martin Hajek

“A socket is reserved for a near field communication (NFC) chip that will make the new phones able to do mobile payments (finally), our source says. Apple will populate the socket with a chip made by NXP,” Sullivan reports. “The fingerprint reader in the new phones will boast some minor improvements to speed up read times, cut down on false rejections, and improve security for mobile payments and biometrics.”

Read more in the full article here.


      1. A socket…..then later you take it back to the Apple store and they’ll open the phone for you and pop in a new NFC chip at no charge 🙂 This article is major BS

        1. I’m not commenting on the accuracy of the article at large, but using the term “socket” is fairly common in the consumer electronics & semiconductor world. When a chip maker wins a design with a company like Apple, it is common to refer to it as “winning the socket”.

    1. What is with these analysts insisting that Apple will adopt NFC? Why would Apple adopt NFC when it already has iBeacon being adopted in droves, and mobile payments can be done using a bar code generation software just like the Starbucks app?

      1. Why? NFC is used for far mor things than retail.
        Large transport networks use it, like TfL’s Oyster Card in London, and other cities are either using similar systems, or adopting them, so it would be ideal for travellers to be able to install an app for their local transit system that allows them to use their phone instead of a card.
        All anyone travelling to a particular city would need is an app on their phone, no queuing for tickets.
        Why is this such a difficult thing for people to grasp?

        1. We may be talking about two different things. Let me know if so.

          The problem with RFC by way of RFID chips is that they are brainless sources of information that is entirely private. You activate them, they dump their information through the air as radio frequency EM waves.

          They’re typically rated to dump their data within an activation distance of 3 inches. There are two problems there: (1) This assumes a standard triggering device, not an amplified device. With an amplified trigger/receiver that distance becomes larger. (2) 3 inches is plenty of space for any random hacker to ‘bonk’ into you (as the Brits call it), trigger your RFC chip and grab whatever it dumps.

          Nothing at all in the RFC spec requires encryption. When encryption is used, typically the decryption key is idiotically small, or the encryption is idiotically minimal. The result is that, in these cases, any teenager can crack the data. Example: Why is the 4 digit PIN still allowed in this day and age? That’s 10,000 combinations, which is trivial to crack by any household computer in less than a minute. The mind boggles.

          As I point out to people: If your RFC chipped card is provided with a Faraday cage, aka a foil envelope, the provider knows perfectly well that all of the above is the case. Therefore, to stop the auto dumping of your identity data by way of ‘bonking’, you have to protect the stupid chip behind a barrier. Note how no one ever has to do that with any magnetic stripe card, which results in them actually being SAFER than a typical RFC chipped card, despite utter bullshit to the contrary.

          There is a strenuous, right way to do RFC chipped cards. But the result is a system that is MORE complicated than simply sliding your magnetic striped card. Then add in the default laziness of all of us and you find very few companies willing to take the hard road. Quick and Easy wins almost every time, resulting in outright dangerous RFC chips. Not I emphasize that they can be dangerous.

          As an aside is the bullshit that RFC chips would have prevented the MASS robbery of user accounts at Target et al. No it would NOT. The source of the customer data, magnetic stripe or RFC or hand typed numbers had nothing-at-all to do with the problem. The problem is (A) lousy old Windows XP embedded, which shockingly was perpetrated into huge numbers of POS (point of sale) devices, and (B) The fact that all of this data was stored in the clear in RAM, no encryption. It’s trivial to break into lousy Windows XP Embedded and install RAM data capture and transmission software. The data gets sent off to the hackers, end of story. The ONLY solution is to toss the POS POS devices into the trash and start again with 100% end-to-end encrypted data devices and data pathways. And again, we’re back to that hard road that requires a lot of work and violates the Quick and Easy mantra.

          I really should study exactly what Europe has been doing with their RFC data, in and outside of the chips. It would be brilliant if they took the hard road and did it right. In the meantime, my stupid US state of New York foisted a driver’s license/passport card on me that has to live inside a Faraday cage. IOW: They took the Quick and Easy route and did it dead WRONG.

  1. Most 12-year-old geeks could predict that it’ll have a newer A-series CPU, and 802.11ac on a Broadcom chip! The mention of NFC consigns this rumor to the Trash Can.

    Major retailers in my area are starting to upgrade their checkout card-readers for the upcoming onslaught of chip-and-signature credit cards (I’ve already got one in my new VISA card). But of course their lazy-ass corporate IT departments haven’t activated the chip-reader slots yet! So far as I know, these many new units do NOT include support for NFC.

  2. I’m going to go out on a limb and make a prediction–everyone hold your breath and mark my words…the 2015 Fall iPhone is going to have the amazing A9 chip!!! There, I said it first.

  3. A “source” from TigerBeat has revealed the new device will only be available in Emerald Green, and may or may not grant its user an undetermined number of wishes. The “person” was unable to confirm whether or not Apple would be including a pot of gold with purchase, although they did confirm that its deliciousness will be magical.

  4. If Apple puts NFC into the iPhone, which I doubt, it would be part of a contactless payment system in partnership with VISA and nothing else. Customers don’t need to know how or why it works, just that they can now make payments using their phone wherever they see the VISA contactless payment logo.

    1. This is my suspicion as well. Safari integration with a Visa Checkout wallet would give them a pretty large digital payment presence fairly quickly both online and instore … all tied to 800 Million Credit Cards. That’s 800 Million reasons Apple could finally add NFC.

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