Visa, MasterCard, and American Express to Back iPhone 6 NFC Mobile Payment System

September 4, 2014 •

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Last week, an NFC chip location was spotted on the iPhone 6 logic boards. Now, Feld & Volk confirms the rumor mill suspicions, through Sonny Dickinson, a long time Apple part leaker. The most recent findings show photographic evidence of the alleged NXP chip for Near Field Communication. As noted in the blown up image above, the chipset is a 65v10.

This find all but seals any earlier doubts about the iPhone utilizing NFC. While Apple has previously noted that NFC was not ripe enough to be useful, it appears the California based company will be changing their tune. With an announcement just days away, on Tuesday September 9, it will be interesting to see how Apple justifies this new move.

As if the actual hardware evidence were not enough, there are winds running through the blogosphere also alleging confirmations from Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. A recent report from Bloomberg, a known Apple controlled leak source, pegged Visa and MasterCard for working on the payment system with Apple. Additionally, Re/code confirmed the arrangement with American Express. Re/code has also been the source of the iWatch confirmation, stating Apple plans to reveal the details of its wearable device alongside iPhone 6.

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The mobile payment system is currently misunderstood by armchair analysts, mostly due to the potential complexity of the offering. Mobile payments can be driven by the iPhone 6 confirmed NFC chip and then processed through existing iTunes account credit cards. As we noted in an earlier post, iTunes has upwards of 800 million active iTunes accounts, complete with existing credit cards.

However, the inked deals with Visa, MasterCard, and American Express add a new twist. As the concept above (Ricard0 del Toro) portrays, the system may be similar to Apple’s existing Passport.app. Theoretically,  a user would be able to store the credit card information locally through a wallet style app and call the preferred card at the point of sale. Alternatively, users may be required to upload all of their cards into iTunes and then be prompted with a selection at checkout.

The TouchID integration is less of a debate. Most certainly, Apple set themselves up for success, using the iPhone 5s as a prototype for the finger print scanner. The scanner’s true function may be revealed next week as the barrier to mobile payment confirmation. It makes complete sense to hypothesize, mobile payments will only work for devices with 1) the NFC chip and 2) TouchID sensors. Once a user taps-to-pay, the transaction will only be completed with a confirmation from the device’s TouchID sensor. The confirmation system would, arguably, be the most advanced and secure payment system for common consumers.

As an added value, there are rumors also circulating that iWatch may also be linked into the payment system in some way. Provided the device also carries a compatible NFC chip, a simple iWatch tap could confirm a payment as well. However, rumors and part leaks about the iWatch still remain minimal; it is best to only weigh on the iPhone 6 “confirmations” at this juncture.

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