Apple iPhone 5 not likely to support NFC: report

Will the Apple iPhone 5 support mobile payments through NFC? A report out yesterday from the folks at AnandTech claims no. Supposed pictures of the iPhone 5’s assembly posted by Taiwan-based blog Apple.pro pointed to a part that not seen in earlier pictures.

The dimensions of the part apparently matched those of specific NFC chips, leading to rumors that the mystery part could be an NFC chip. The addition of electronic ticket organizer Passbook to iOS 6 also fueled rumors that the iPhone 5 would let users make mobile payments using near-field communications. But AnandTech has discounted both of those information, saying that the new iPhone’s backside precludes the chance of NFC.

“Given the mostly metal backside of the iPhone 5, it’s highly unlikely that NFC is in the cards for this generation,” the tech review site said. “In fact, given the not much space at the bottom and top dedicated to those glass RF windows, you can almost completely rule it out. The NFC antenna itself would require ample and dense space, more than would be feasible if it were placed at the tight bottom or the top of the phone’s assembly.

“With an NFC antenna at the extreme bottom or top, alignment with non-iPhones becomes a much more complicated job, and that does not seem like the Apple-like level of polish many people are waiting for to drive NFC adoption,” AnandTech added.

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