Rumor: Apple readying their stores for NFC payments

If the rumor is true, Apple could be on the verge of propelling the much anticipated NFC (Near Field Communication) payment system closer to retail acceptance.  NFC is a new alternative to Bluetooth technology. It’s slower than Bluetooth, but doesn’t require pairing, and doesn’t require the targeted entity to be powered, which lends itself to barcode readers and the like. It also creates a connection in less than 1/10th of a second. The first popular use for the technology will be at POS systems, and many manufacturers have already announced and released phones that come with NFC enabled.

One of the main reasons retailers haven’t been quick to accept NFC as a valid payment options has little to do with security, compatibility or cost. It is simply the fact that Apple hasn’t embraced the technology on its iDevices. Given the market share the titular device enjoys, it’s no wonder that retailers are willing to wait. However, according to BGR’s Apple sources, current reworking of many Apple POS systems and installation of new payment desks using different wiring schemes may point a possible NFC payment option in Apple stores.

While this hasn’t been in any way confirmed, if Apple decides to enable in-store NFC payments, it’s an almost sure sign that NFC capability will be included in the iPhone 5, expected to be released in September. Once Apple jumps on the NFC bandwagon, retailers will likely follow suit pretty quickly, and NFC rollouts may just sweep the nation.

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19 Comments

Really. The world isn't using NFC because the iPhone doesn't support it? Suuure...
More like retailers don't want to replace all their POS hardware.

x9_ said,
Really. The world isn't using NFC because the iPhone doesn't support it? Suuure...
More like retailers don't want to replace all their POS hardware.

That's wierd because where I am at in Pennsylvania, almost everyone that has a mastercard sponsored terminal supports them, and basically every place that isn't bargin bottom (like dollar stores) has them now.... we had this NFC stuff almost 5 years ago at one of our most agressive convienance store chains (sheetz) they always put in latest tech... so at least around here NFC is everywhere...

neufuse said,

That's wierd because where I am at in Pennsylvania, almost everyone that has a mastercard sponsored terminal supports them, and basically every place that isn't bargin bottom (like dollar stores) has them now.... we had this NFC stuff almost 5 years ago at one of our most agressive convienance store chains (sheetz) they always put in latest tech... so at least around here NFC is everywhere...

I don't know what the situation is like in the US, but I don't think there are many places in Australia that use NFC for payments. I'm sure there are some, but it's not a common thing to see.

x9_ said,
Really. The world isn't using NFC because the iPhone doesn't support it? Suuure...
More like retailers don't want to replace all their POS hardware.

No, the world hasn't being using it (on a massive scale) because there hasn't been a formal standard in place. There's a project called Project ISIS that the US phone operators are collaborating on to create this standard.

Android phones currently support NFC with Nexus S and Galaxy S II.

I'd say this rumor is more than likely true because if you think about it, it will get enabled on the iPhone, people will be dying to try it out, nowhere else will support it which means that for a user to test it they will have to pay at least $39.95 to test it out in store. Which is a good business strategy.

x9_ said,

I don't know what the situation is like in the US, but I don't think there are many places in Australia that use NFC for payments. I'm sure there are some, but it's not a common thing to see.


Seems the same over here (Florida).

x9_ said,
Really. The world isn't using NFC because the iPhone doesn't support it? Suuure...
More like retailers don't want to replace all their POS hardware.

Wouldn't you?

neufuse said,

That's wierd because where I am at in Pennsylvania, almost everyone that has a mastercard sponsored terminal supports them, and basically every place that isn't bargin bottom (like dollar stores) has them now.... we had this NFC stuff almost 5 years ago at one of our most agressive convienance store chains (sheetz) they always put in latest tech... so at least around here NFC is everywhere...

Please LETS GET THIS STRAIGHT.

What has been on the market for the past 5 years (In the US) is paypass by Mastercard or Express Pay by Amex. Those are RFID readers that are intended to read a chip that was supposed to be added to everyones credit cards so that you could "tap n go" using your credit card.
The service which had some mild success with the gas station readers at the pump did not take off otherwise. I spent a yr adding those terminals at sites in all 50 states, trying to get them to work with various point of sale systems. 1st thing i can tell you is they SUCK, and are a pain to get configured properly. They are also crappy construction, and have no real warranty to speak of, so that each time they break the site has to buy a new one for a couple of hundred dollars a pop.

Now with that being said NFC is not RFID and is designed to be used directly with your phone / device.

Another push for NFC

Visa Unveils Digital Wallet Supporting NFC Payments

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V), a global leader in electronic payments, today announced the next generation of payments solutions that will replicate the ease, reliability and security of Visa point-of-sale payments within traditional and digital eCommerce, mobile commerce and burgeoning social networking commerce environments. New offerings are expected to include a secure cross-channel digital wallet and a range of customized mobile payments services that address the specific requirements of geographic markets around the world.

"Our new solutions deliver greater consumer choice, convenience and control while helping our clients grow their businesses. By helping to reduce abandoned online shopping carts and bringing new account holders into the Visa network, we create a win-win-win for merchants, consumers and financial institutions," noted Joseph W. Saunders, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Visa Inc. "In addition, we believe Visa's new payments products and services will help expand financial inclusion to the billions of mobile subscribers today who currently lack access to traditional financial services."

Simplifying Commerce in Complex Economies

In certain countries with established electronic payments infrastructures, expansive Internet usage and broad mobile network penetration, Visa will be introducing a digital wallet and services platform. The digital wallet will store Visa and non-Visa payments accounts, support NFC payments through the innovative Visa payWave application and deliver a wide range of transaction services to accommodate multiple commerce scenarios--including eCommerce, mobile commerce, micropayments, social networks and person-to-person payments.

Visa is working with leading payments card issuers, community banks, credit unions, acquirers, payments processors and merchants to launch the digital wallet. Among the financial institutions and organizations supporting Visa's wallet strategy are:

Barclaycard US, BB&T Corporation, Card Services for Credit Unions (CSCU), ICBA Bancard, First Financial Bank of Ohio, Nordstrom fsb, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, PNC Bank, PSCU Financial Services, Regions Bank, Royal Bank of Canada, Scotiabank, TD Bank Group (US and Canada), US Bank

Visa expects to launch the digital wallet in the U.S. and Canada in fall 2011....

http://www.mobiletechnews.com/info/2011/05/11/164734.html

I thought NFC payments were limited to £15, or some small amount, how would any of the products apple sells in its store be able to be paid for with this? Wouldn't it therefore be useless in Apple stores?

Apple may be planning something big for its 10th retail anniversary this Thursday the 19th.

- There's an overnight shift planned for around 10-15 individuals at each Apple Store to work from late Saturday all the way through mid-Sunday.
- During the overnight shift, it's going to be required that employees lock cell phones in the main office. They will also have to sign an NDA with Apple.
- There are a wide variety of roles, we're told, for the overnight shift. This includes all visuals staff, a manager, a business team member, a few Genius team members, one back-of-house employee, and a few generic Apple specialists.
- Apple stores have apparently already received hardware to install, and are expecting more hardware to come on Friday or Saturday. All materials that Apple stores have received have been instructed to be under lock and key until after close on Saturday night.
- Apple employees will be putting up black curtains at all stores so that people walking outside cannot see inside.
- Employees have had to download gigabytes of data from Apple corporate labeled, “training” in a password-protected zipped folder that won't accessible to managers or anyone else until Saturday afternoon.
- Lastly, all Apple retail stores have mandatory meetings on Sunday, May 22nd. Most meeting are scheduled for the morning, but there are evening meetings as well.

I didnt think we was getting an Iphone5, rather an 4S as the 4G chips were not being manufactured in big enough quantities?

How secure is all this technology? I was under the impression the information could be easily picked up by anyone with an RF scanner of sorts...

kvaughan said,
How secure is all this technology? I was under the impression the information could be easily picked up by anyone with an RF scanner of sorts...

That was one of the things with the paypass technology which uses RFID chips (part of the reason i dont think it took off as well - LINK http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WcTqq5aQz-A from an actual Los Angeles TV news cast showing talking about cards being able to be 'read")

The new NFC is supposed to use their own standard, which is why they say its not bluetooth or RFID

It might not be the info been picked up that's the problem. Say you drop (or leave) your card somewhere. What's to stop someone using it to buy tons of stuff before you know it's missing.

This makes me uncomfortable but I can't think of a good reason why. I guess the wireless nature of the communication for money transfer concerns me.... but how is that any different from buying something over the Internet (even if the data is encrypted)?

What about putting all your eggs in one basket, maybe? Well...a stolen credit card is just as bad. At least if my phone is stolen I can remote wipe it.

I don't know why..this just makes me uncomfortable. Maybe because it is different.

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