New Apple patents hint that the Apple iPhone 4 may come with near field communication (NFC) technology baked in.
NFC would mean that iPhones could work as door passes, or unlock Macbooks. The same tech may also be included in iPod Touch, Macbooks and Macbook Pro, potentially even the Apple iPad.
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There are already apps that rely on Bluetooth to lock and unlock your Macbook, such as Airlock, but NFC would be near-seamless. Late last year another Apple patent hinted that RFID and their Grab and Go app might be linked to similar effect, but it seems that Apple has decided to go with the broader NFC tech. Or at least patent it to make sure.
NFC is due to be added to the mobile radio mix shortly, with Nokia quietly promoting the idea for some years. London 2015 Olympics organisers also claimed that NFC-based tech – ‘wave and pay’ – would be a major part of the games, allowing you and me to stroll around, waving our Barclaycards at burger vans rather than handling nasty, plebeian cash.