Leaked prototypes of the iPhone 5 have added weight to speculation that the next-gen Apple smartphone will allow owners to pay for goods and services with their handset.
According to 9to5Mac, code taken from tests conducted on two working models of the iPhone 5 indicate that the handset will be equipped with Near Field Communications (NFC) chips and an antenna.
The technology, which has been present and correct in Android phones for some time, enables smartphone owners to swipe their handset over a reader to pay for low-ticket items.
It’s thought that NFC support could be incorporated into future versions of the digital card and ticket Passbook app that is coming to existing iPhone handsets in October when iOS 6 drops.
Apple’s adoption of NFC could be just the fillip the technology needs, after years of false starts and premature predictions that it was about to achieve a market breakthrough.
Other features expected to be present and correct on the iPhone 5 include a larger four-inch screen, a completely redesigned shell and 4G support in countries where the next-generation mobile internet standard is available.
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