Bad news today for folks who were hoping that near field communications technology, or NFC, would make it into the new iPhone. It looks like the tech is a no-go for Apple’s next smartphone.

Theories for the tech picked up steam yesterday when a square chip inside a leaked iPhone 5 part was identified as an NFC sensor. But according to a new report, it’s not happening this year…

The news comes from the smart folks over at AnandTech, who are known for their in-depth product reviews and hardware knowledge. And they’re saying that NFC can be almost entirely ruled out.

“Given the primarily metal backside of the new iPhone, it’s highly unlikely that NFC is in the cards for this generation. In fact, given the very little space at top and bottom dedicated to those glass RF windows, you can almost entirely rule it out.”

Consistent leaks of rear shells belonging to the next-gen iPhone show a two-tone design, with a broad metal insert between two glass panels. Wi-Fi and Cellular antennas will be housed behind these RF windows, and according to Anandtech, there’s not enough room for an NFC chip.

And if you’re still not convinced, The Loop’s well-connected Jim Dalrymple pointed to the report this morning and added his trademark “yep” of approval. Dalrymple was Macworld’s Editor at Large for several years, and we can’t remember the last time he was wrong about Apple-related intel.

But word of Apple’s omission of NFC tech in its next smartphone brings about more questions than answers. When is it going to make its long-rumored jump into the mobile payment business, and what does the future hold for its Passbook application? Maybe AuthenTec holds the key.

  • jose castro

    glad this is just a maybe.. because no one really knows. it could be a new part that no ones seen before…

  • Ok then what is that square then? Because it did not exist in previous iphone models

  • lol Passbook will just be a waste of space in my phone when I upgrade to ios 6


    maybe the ambient light sensor?

  • JamesR624

    Am I the only one disappointed that that ugly two tone back is going to be the next back? Why are the iPhones getting UGLIER with each design? First they did great with an aluminum back similar to the iPad 2 and 3, then they went with cheap plastic that was slightly uglier but still okay. Then they went with stupid glass sandwich which is not only ugly but fragile. Now they take that same design and make sure the back isn’t even consistent, just to drive home how horrible they are at designing hardware for the iPhone.
    They really should take some tips from the iPad design team. The iPad got better aesthetically with each revision. The iPhone got worse.
    In fact, put an iMac, MacBook, iPad and iPhone next to each other. All look like they came from the same company except the iPhone. The iPhone doesn’t even remotely fit in with the family of Apple’s products appearance-wise.

    • Sry to say this but… The iPhone 4/4S was and ist the best looking phone ever in my opinion. And the next iPhone? Don’t say Apple failed… They haven’t evan made it official yet 😉

  • Nothing is for sure by far.
    I believe in Harvey Dent, well, Apple as well.
    You guys won’t be disappointed! About everything!

  • What about the patents?

  • anasiatka

    I actually agree with another comment on the previous article about the effectiveness of NFC being less effective and longer to really take off compared to bluetooth which is already widely available. I honestly think that all we need the software aspects which I believe iOS 6 will take care of.

  • the new iphone is just the 4S wit taller display thats all folks and be sure this will make me cry because all i wanted is the iphone 5 but now im feeling that this phone will be same basicaly only the os is diffrent

  • pigsy101

    If true …. Apple just truly landed behind the 8-ball. For those that do not care if the NFC is included that is fine but for me I want the option to use it or not. We all upgrade our mobiles on average ever 2 years right? …. so what I get the new iP5 now but the iP5s has the NFC next year? …. give me a break.

    Apples has to have NFC included in this model … why? …. because a year is a loooong time in this kind of market and other makers like Samsung, LG or HTC don’t rely on just 1 particular flagship model phone like Apple do.