9to5mac has reportedly pulled information from two iPhone prototypes codenamed N41AP and N42AP. These two prototypes reportedly have NFC chips that are capable of wireless payments. 9to5mac has also found that the NFC chips’s controller connects directly to the new iPhone’s power management unit (PMU).
These rumors are very believable as Passbook was announced in iOS 6. Passbook is a mobile wallet application developed by Apple that allows users to keep boarding passes, rewards cards and giftcards on their iOS device. If NFC is announced with the new iPhone, Apple will definitely bring mobile payments to the mainstream market if they partnered with MasterCard Paypass or something similar for credit card transactions.
NFC would also allow iPhone users to share data and interact with other nearby smartphone users who have NFC enabled devices.
While I’m hoping that the next iPhone has NFC, nothing is confirmed until we hear it from Apple. If Apple continues their current product refresh cycle, we will see this new iPhone in October. Until then, we can only speculate. If you’re excited for possible NFC functionality in the new iPhone, let us know in the comments.