At first glance, the latest part leak for Apple’s next iPhone doesn’t appear to show much more than what we’ve already seen several times over the last few months.But some closer inspection by the Japanese blog Macotakara shows that the device may include a special chip that will let you make payments with the phone.
The leaked photo first came to us on Apple.pro via MacRumors and shows an assembled front display of the next iPhone. Macotakara speculates that the square portion at the top of the display could house a Near Field Communication (NFC) chip.
NFC chips are used in several Android phones like Samsung’s Galaxy S III and Galaxy Nexus to swap content between devices or make secure mobile payments using apps like Google Wallet.
It has long been speculated that Apple would add NFC capabilities to the iPhone, but those rumours have always turned out to be false.
However, Apple is introducing a new app called Passbook in its next operating system for iPhone and iPads that will act as a digital wallet for your gift cards, boarding passes, and tickets. Many have speculated Passbook could be Apple’s first step into making credit card payments with your phone.
In June, 9to5Mac discovered references in the hardware code for the next iPhone that could mean the device will have an NFC chip.
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