The Financial Times is reporting this morning that Apple has tapped Dutch chipmaker NXP to produce NFC chips for the upcoming iPhone 6. Citing several people familiar with the project, the site claims the secure, short-range wireless technology will facilitate transactions in a new mobile payment service.
The report doesn’t add much in the way of new details, but it does corroborate with the ongoing consensus that after shunning the technology for several years, Apple has finally decided to add NFC to its handsets. Wired and Recode had similar scoops yesterday, as did well-connected blogger John Gruber.
Linking to Recode’s story on his popular Daring Fireball site, Gruber hinted that he’s heard the new iPhone 6 will feature NFC and a new secure enclave that will allow users to store their credit cards and pay for things in brick and mortar stores. He even suggested Apple’s wearable will have similar capabilities.
As you’ve probably read in the recent barrage of Apple-mobile payment pieces, the company has over 800 million iTunes accounts and a trove of mobile payment-related patents. Combine these things with the Passbook platform, and Apple’s new iBeacon tech, and it certainly seems like all of the pieces match up.
NXP is already an Apple supplier, and has long provided NFC chips for handset manufacturers like Samsung. Earlier this week, photos of a logic board allegedly belonging to the iPhone 6 surfaced, and upon inspection, it was discovered that it features a surface area that would fit NXP’s PN65 NFC package perfectly.