Apple testing RFID-enabled iPhone?

Einar Rosenberg, the chief technology officer at NFC specialist Narian Technologies and who runs the Near Field Communications Group on, has reported the following:

Had to share this news. A highly reliable source has informed me that Apple has built some prototypes of the next gen iPhone with an RFID reader built in and they have seen it in action. So its not full NFC but its a start for real service discovery and I’m told that the reaction was very positive that we can expect this in the next gen iPhone.

If Apple does it, expect every phone manufacturer and their sister to begin pumping out NFC enabled phones, at least for service discovery and sync.

This just reinforces what we knew based on the two separate patents Apple submitted that had the iPhone enabled to read RFID tags. I’m told that the touch project video and the BT SIG’s specs were all driving forces to push this forward as well as other factors.

Guess I’ll be touching my iPhone to my Mac to link them together to sync iTunes by next year.

For more details on Apple’s ‘Touch Screen RFID Tag Reader’ patent see our earlier article here.

Update: And here’s the Touch Project‘s iPhone RFID demonstration video:

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6 comments on this article

  1. OK… seriously…. NOT happy about any more RFID intrusion into my life…. Apple… if you're reading this… NO TO RFID!

    1. What do you mean? this would be great for people, open doors unimagined. Turn it off if you don't want it, but from the looks of it, everyone would greatly benefit.

  2. Well, this could change the whole RFID paradigm. If we have a populous armed with RFID readers it will be difficult to hide RFID tags on anyone. Unless, of course, they program reader available to the public to ignore specific RFID codes. But you know there will always be hacked versions available that display all RFID codes. I am sure we will find ways to disable any unwanted RFID tags as well.

    To my eyes, this is a very reassuring development. Especially as it relates to this story:,2817,2354848,00.a

  3. Surely the end game is to use the power of iTunes and its established micro payment mechanism within a wider market. Micro payments facilitated by a mobile device, backed up with an established and trusted brand allows Apple and 3rd parties to allow users to make cashless purchases on the move.

    Beyond this there are many other more inventive options but I would guess they are aiming to make iTunes a mobile transaction standard.

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