Phil Schiller explains why the iPhone 5 doesn’t have NFC

By , Sep 12, 2012

This year, similar to years past, a lot of folks expected to see Apple add NFC to its new smartphone. And even after previous reports all but ruled out the tech, a last minute scoop made it a possibility again.

Alas, the iPhone 5 event came and went, with no mention of Near Field Communications. And the company has since confirmed that the handset does not contain the wireless payment tech. Here’s why…

In an interview with AllThingsD, Apple’s Senior VP of Marketing explained why they decided not to go with NFC:

“In an interview, Apple Senior VP Phil Schiller said that Passbook alone does what most customers want and works without existing merchant payment systems.

It’s not clear that NFC is the solution to any current problem, Schiller said. “Passbook does the kinds of things customers need today.”

Passbook, as most of you know, is a new app in iOS 6 that allows users to store things like gift cards, boarding passes and event tickets. And a lot of folks thought NFC would make a great companion to the service.

Schiller also touched on wireless charging. The tech world wasn’t expecting the new iPhone to be capable of cordless power-ups, but Nokia’s new Lumia 920 is and that poses a valid question: why not Apple?

“Schiller notes that the wireless charging systems still have to be plugged into the wall, so it’s not clear how much convenience they add. The widely-adopted USB cord, meanwhile, can charge in wall outlets, computers and even on airplanes, he said.

“Having to create another device you have to plug into the wall is actually, for most situations, more complicated,” Schiller said.

Finally, Schiller commented on Apple’s new “Lightning” dock connector, saying that trying to build devices as thin as the new iPhone and iPod “simply wasn’t possible” without changing the size of the cord.

But don’t worry, he assures that this will be Apple’s dock connector for many years to come.

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  • abujafer

    You know, you can have MULTIPLE chargers in one house… a USB one, and a wireless one. Shocking, I know.

    • http://twitter.com/Sico93 Arno Nymous

      You know that some people sometimes leave the House?

      • http://twitter.com/Plazmer Ahmed Muhammad

        Will at least they should’ve provided the wireless charging as an external accessory on their website..

  • Rodney Coleman

    Ummm because of the hacking and NFC will get them easier access.. lames lol.. 25 million iphones hack.. Android 0

  • Rodney Coleman

    Maybe because apple knows that NFC will cause folks to get there phones hacked much Easier.. and the new cord makes me mad to think of even more money I have to spend for a adapter :/.. Adnroid all the way

  • http://twitter.com/klouud Timothy Polumbo

    Does the new dock connector charge the phone faster? Or is it just for faster data transfer?

    • abujafer

      I think charging was limited by the battery before, not the charger. Of course, they could have overhauled the entire system with the new chargers, so I have no idea really.

  • Connor

    Honestly, apple only needs to work on one phone and they hardly get everything right, so ridiculous how people will pay for more just because it’s apple when you can get an s3 for much much better specs and a cheaper price.. ..

    • http://twitter.com/fr8cture Eric

      This is the wrong site to be talking about android, but i agree with you i just jumped ship and got a S3 a few weeks ago and i don’t regret it. This keynote has reassured me that the S3 is the phone that i want. My mind was pretty much decided when i saw iOS6 and this made it that much better.

    • abujafer

      Wrong site. Also, one or two mistakes doesn’t warrant a rage-fest. I have an S3 as well but that doesn’t mean the iPhone 5 isn’t a great deal. I’d be seriously considering one if I didn’t have a phone already; it may be weaker in every spec, but it has it where it counts; (much) larger app ecosystem, better support (although the Android community supports systems long after their demise), and a cohesive experience built around one phone. If you value any of those three things, an iPhone is great for you.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=604885391 Richard Borkovec

        The iOS App Store has 650,000+ apps, the Google Play Store has 600,000+ apps the “much larger” claim is basically invalid. Yes, it’s easier to have an ecosystem around one phone, but people are finicky, and I think this keynote proved that. We expected more, and were severely let down. The new iPod Touch seemed to be the real star of this, and I think it’s awesome, but it definitely out-shown the iPhone 5.

      • abujafer

        As an Android user, I’m going to point out that most apps come first to Apple devices. There are tons of games on Apple devices that just don’t see the light of day on Android, and if they do, it’s a half-assed experience. Now, you have the other side of the coin where games such as Max Payne are greatly superior to the iOS versions, but that’s pretty rare considering.

    • NSA

      S3 is piece of junk….my brother has bought S3, problems started to show up after few months…At least Apple is a trusted brand.

      My friend has S2, the phone stooped working after 2 and half years…

      Samsung gives better specs but when you come to benchmark test , the iPhone beats Galaxy :))

  • seyss

    I guess they didn’t release iPhone with NFC because they don’t have any plans for it.. and releasing the hardware without a special use for it would only help the competition..

  • http://flavors.me/mile MILE

    While I understand that yet another chip inside the device may be a disadvantage for battery life it’s sad to see that Apple — just like so many others — seems to think that NFC is only a solution for mobile payment…! The NFC technology can be used for so many other things already and once it’s available to more users people will come up with even more innovative use cases…!

    And even though there are many more Android devices out there the iPhone has enough leverage to help NFC become mainstream so it’s a bummer that they decided to sit it out for at least another year…

    • SimonReidy

      Well said. Its a real disappointment.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ryanjames.christensen Ryan James Christensen

    They need to make: 1. A LONGER USB CORD! The thing can’t stretch anywhere by itself. 2. They need to make a wall charger that can hold multiple USB cords, so you can charge multiple devices at the same time and place. I know that there is products like that already but Apple needs to make one. If they did a lot more people would trust the product.

    • Outhig

      Buy one on eBay, I got a 2m one, any longer and it doesn’t work. I’m sure lightning ones will be available later.

  • http://kinglizzle.com/ Lizzle

    Lightning is a ridiculous name for a cable that isn’t USB 3.0! What was there to lose by going with the latest standard which is fully backwards compatible with USB 2.0 ports?

    • http://www.facebook.com/jorge.f.n.vieira Jorge Vieira

      a LOT of money out of licensing!

  • http://twitter.com/e420kush e420Kush

    Hmm NFC does not sound like anything I want. i don’t want the technology in my Credit Cards, and I sure as FUCK don’t want it in my phone. If its this EASY to steal CC info how easy would to STEAL EVERYTHING IN YOUR PHONE??? WOW you actually want this on your device…wtf http://www.bgr.com/2012/06/21/android-app-nfc-credit-card-data-theft/

    • a smit

      Its creepy when you think at what could be in store for us with this kind of tech – NFC will could (and probably will) help lead us into to a cashless society, or at least hasten its arrival.

      So imagine all money is digital and say you cant pay your bills for some reason (injury, etc). Now assume that some (or all) of those debtors really want those credits from you.
      What would stop them from cutting off your account through some court order, or just taking the credits?

      This is just one example – we need to be weary of this kind of tech IMO

      • http://twitter.com/e420kush e420Kush

        I agree 100%, I watched something like dateline or similar show a while back and same thing with the credit card swiping, walk up wave this magical electronic device, and bam, all their credit card info, Name, Address, Pin, Phone Number, everything was taken, and then they showed the unsuspecting people afterwards to show them that it was possible, and thieves were already using such technology.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1595420643 Simche Apple Konstantinovic

    I guess NFC will
    Pop
    Up in the iPhone 5S/6…

  • Mysteroy3k

    Btw , Duracell already have a wireless charger station thats compatible for iPhones and othe mobile devices , not a exclusive featire

  • Joshua Vargas

    Wireless charging is actually useful for when you are in an airport terminal or a coffee shop and you didn’t bring your charger, so you put your phone on top of the establishment’s wireless chargers. Nokia partnered with Virgin Airlines and some coffee shops and other places to set up wireless chargers once the Lumia gets sales enough to merit such implementation.

  • http://www.facebook.com/william.hackett.33 William Hackett

    How is it less convenient to just drop your iPhone on a charging plate?