SHINY TOY VENDOR Apple has dashed hopes of creating a universal standard for mobile payment by rejecting Near Field Communication (NFC) technology on its upcoming Iphone models.
Controlling overlords at Apple won't be adding NFC on any of its new Iphones. Not the 4GS, Iphone 5 or any future iterations. Anonymous sources from at the cappuccino firm told the Independent that NFC will be a no go for Apple. The sources also said that Apple is dropping NFC because it is working on its own technology. But we're sure you could have guessed that already.
"The new Iphone will not have NFC, Apple told the operators it was concerned by the lack of a clear standard across the industry," said the source.
NFC is the one technology to rule them all in the mobile connected device market, and it is set for mass adoption this year. Mobile users with NFC-enabled smartphones will be able to share music, photos, and personal data by a simply beaming them directly to each others' phones. NFC also allows for instant payment from devices and Google has already made the jump with support for it in Android 2.3.3. HTC has already announced smartphones with Gingerbread updates that give its smartphones NFC support. Back in 2008 telco operators were already hailing trails of NFC technology a huge success.
What is so galling is that Apple said there is a lack of clarity across the industry. That's because Apple is creating that lack of clarity by not supporting NFC. The sources also alleged that Apple's own spin on NFC would send users directly through payment systems via Itunes. That will give Apple what Apple always wants, end-to-end control over its entire eco-system, even if it means ripping up proposed universal standards to get the job done.
Trying to create any universal standard in technology is difficult enough with so many players pulling in different directions. However, NFC looked like it would be the technology of choice to for wave and pay in mobile devices.
Apple's intransigence doesn't mean that NFC will be dead in the water when it's expected to be fully adopted this year. But it does mean that Apple will create yet another bifurcated technology model with the only losers being us, the users. µ