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Near Field Communications in iPhones?

NFC technology has been around for a while, years actually, however it’s only starting to penetrate mass use in the last couple of years. Most smartphones already include it by default – Samsung, Nokia, RIM and many others.

However, Apple hasn’t equipped any iPhone or iPad device as of yet. You may not know this, but there’s quite a rumour mill let alone debate around this topic. So we will try to sum up a few key points and our opinion as to why iPhones don’t offer NFC technology.

The first point to consider is that Apple has invested in quite a few NFC related patents and research centres.
In addition, people say that NFC is a natural extension of Apple’s Passbook ticketing and coupon native application (so now by just “tapping” a voucher/ticket/poster… it will migrate to your device).

In contrast, many people don’t believe Apple will include NFC technology in their phones. They argue that NFC will not reach mass market, which doesn’t correlate with Apple’s “polished, mainstream” product lines. They say that – “If they didn’t include it by now, there’s a slim chance they will…”. There’s no indication in iOS 7 that NFC will be included. Others speculate that Apple will use biometric scans (fingerprints) rather than NFC in order to confirm mobile payments.

Even though the NFC market is moving forward regardless of Apple’s intentions, this topic is very ‘hot’ because it’s clear to all: the moment iPhones will offer NFC capabilities, the technology will truly reach every hand, and developers’ innovative skills will find more practical uses for it. Yet, all these arguments are highly speculative, and based on personal belief and understanding of the market.

We personally believe that Apple will offer NFC with their devices in time, if and when NFC mobile payments penetrate the masses, we doubt anyone will want to be left out the game. However, Apple doesn’t usually release a technology or feature without everyone being able to use it to the fullest extent off the bat (well… besides the map debacle).

To sum this up, there are opposing opinions regarding the feasibility of an Apple device having NFC capabilities. We believe that the forces pushing NFC, as well as the appeal and convenience of the technology will help it’s penetration into our awareness. Once that happens Apple will probably include it in their lines.

It’s important to remember though, NFC is only a technology – what stands behind it is the ability to interact with physical objects and our surroundings. No matter which technology enables this interaction, we are confident this is in our near future.

This is what tag-a-bag is about, allowing us to interact with our belongings, making them smarter than they are today.

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