iPhone 5 Prototypes Have NFC Chips?

A hardware code dump from PreEVT iPhone 5,1 and iPhone 5,2 prototypes codenamed N41AP (5,1) and N42AP (5,2) not only reveals that the iPhone 5 will have bigger 1136×640 display, it also reveals Near Field Communication (NFC) capabilities in the next-gen iPhone, reports 9to5mac.

We’ve previously been able to pull data from PreEVT iPhone 5,1 and iPhone 5,2 prototypes codenamed N41AP (5,1) and N42AP (5,2), which leads us to believe that the new iPhone will have a bigger 1136×640 display. We also detailed a lot of the hardware here but forgot one very important little bit of information. Further investigation into this hardware code dump leads us to believe that these iPhones also have Near Field Communication (NFC) controllers directly connected to the power management unit (PMU).

Interestingly, Jim Peters, CTO of SITA, agrees that NFC is coming to iPhone and retailers should prepare for it. He recently told delegates at this year’s Air Transport IT Summit that they need to be prepared for Apple to add NFC capabilities to its iPhone 5.

“Opinion is that Apple is going to incorporate NFC into Passbook. Apple just thinks about how they can make it really easy for the user, and then they figure out how to monetise it. They don’t think about how to monetise it and then tell the user what they can have. It doesn’t work like that,” said Peters. “There aren’t any transactions in it yet, but I think that’s how Apple is going to sneak up on the industry. They are going to get people used to using it and then all of a sudden they will allow credit cards to be used in there, on the next iPhone, which will include NFC.”

Recently announced Passbook app for iOS clearly shows that Apple will be set to compete with Google Wallet and a similar service recently introduced by Microsoft. Apple could tie in with a payment processor like Citibank’s PayPass system for credit card transactions or it could become a payment processor of sorts with its hundreds of millions of credit cards already on file at iTunes.

NFC would also allow iPhone users a quick and easy way to share files from one iOS device to another. So, with Passbook availability, all Apple needs to do is to cut some partnerships and make iTunes backend changes.

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