We’ve been waiting several years for Apple to finally hop aboard the NFC bandwagon. Now that it has in the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, it’s looking to kick everyone else off.
At least, that seems to be the state of affairs according to a new Cult of Mac report. Apparently, an email from an Apple spokeswoman has revealed that Apple Pay – Apple’s new contactless payment system – will be the only app allowed to make use of the new iPhone range’s NFC capabilities.
That means no third party contactless payment apps and systems will be allowed in, of course, but it also means that you won’t be able to pair your iPhone 6 up with NFC-equipped speaker docks, headphones, and the like.
Of course, there’s every possibility that this feature will be opened up next year, following the launch of iOS 9 and the iPhone 6S – or whatever the next incremental iPhone update ends up being called.
After all, the exact same thing happened with Apple’s Touch ID system. When the iPhone 5S launched with fingerprint-sensing technology last year, you could only use it to gain access to your phone or to make App Store payments.
Now, with the launch of iOS 8, you’ll be able to use it for wider online payments and security access, with Apple acting as gatekeeper.
It would be astonishing if Apple didn’t allow its users to experience the full potential of NFC technology, which makes the typically painful Bluetooth pairing experience effortless. There’s also the possibility for taking advantage of NFC tags in advertising, which gives out offers and special features by tapping your phone against a poster or other public point.
It seems as if the NFC chip Apple is using is open to being tinkered with in this way. Hopefully Apple will open things out in short order.
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