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No Contactless Payment System In Next iPhone 239

Posted by timothy
from the we-want-you-to-touch dept.
RedEaredSlider writes "Citing fears over a lack of an industry standard, Apple has ditched plans to include near field communication technology in its next iPhone, The Independent reports. The technology, which allows users to make payments simply by waving their devices over special readers, is widely believed to be the next major step in both cell phone and payment technologies. Apple's decision to avoid it is a significant blow to its adoption."
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No Contactless Payment System In Next iPhone

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  • by master_kaos (1027308) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:09PM (#35498902)
    Can't have something in the device that would add 1 mm to the thickness!
    • by cayenne8 (626475) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @09:47PM (#35499614) Homepage Journal
      I say thank God for this!!

      I seriously don't want something in my phone that hooks in any way into a payment system whether it digs directly into my checking account..or even a special one. Just a great way to get charged for money by a thief. I prefer to just carry cash most of the time.....I don't even like the ATM cards that are also debit cards, and have had to tell the bank I don't want one....only an ATM card, and they sent them to me...

      Aside from the privacy and security problems I have with it..do I REALLY need a new, overly convenient way to spend more fucking money?

      Hell...I'm trying to save for a house and retirement some day....I don't need more temptations to spend easy cash.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by dudpixel (1429789)

        yeah i agree, features are BAD.

        we shouldn't have features, they just make the phone slower, and hurt my privacy and blah blah blah.

        We should only have the features we need, you know, the ones Apple invented. They know what we need...

        If it wasn't invented by Apple then its bad.

      • by currently_awake (1248758) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @11:00PM (#35500094)
        If you lose your wallet the cash is gone. If you lose your phone the thief can run up thousands of dollars in PHONE charges. If you lose your contactless payment device: the thief can spend till your daily limit, or until the police track him down by the built in gps, or until you remotely disable the device. Also there is no reason your phone couldn't have a passcode required to spend money or to spend over a transaction/daily limit. Given the choice the lost contactless payment device might very well be the cheaper theft.
        • by exomondo (1725132)

          If you lose your phone the thief can run up thousands of dollars in PHONE charges. If you lose your contactless payment device: the thief can spend till your daily limit, or until the police track him down by the built in gps, or until you remotely disable the device.

          If you're a fucking moron and don't have a keylock on your phone - which is most likely an access point to much of your personal information, contacts, email, social networking, etc... - then yes that could happen.

          • If you're a fucking moron and don't have a keylock on your phone

            The whole point of the contactless payment systems is you wave your phone over something and it's paid for.

            Otherwise it would be too much bother and you'd just use a credit card.

            • Re:Wrong (Score:4, Insightful)

              by vlm (69642) on Wednesday March 16, 2011 @06:25AM (#35501868)

              The whole point of the contactless payment systems is you wave your phone over something and it's paid for.

              I never understood the whole point of contactless payment, in that I'm already burning 30 minutes driving there, an hour walking around, at least ten minutes standing in line, perhaps ten hours of labor at work to pay for it, and thats all OK, but 2 seconds to pull out my wallet, WELLLLLL thats just an insurmountable obstacle, what do you expect me to climb mt Everest here, that's crazy talk, gimme a contactless system or I'll never shop here again?

              The other mystery I never understood is I always have a backup plan. My visa card got stolen or declined or whatever (actually happened to me once in the 90s) thats no problemo I got a mastercard right here, and an american express too. And cash. And a check card. Furthermore I will not bore you with the details but I "need" to use certain cards at certain places because one gives the most cash back at the gas station, the other gives the most cash back at the convenience store, and the other is a "shared" card for shared family expenses such as food store. So a contactless system for me will have to hold multiple accounts and I'll have to F around with some manner of menu system to select which I want/need to use and hope I get it right each time. Of course it would be a hell of a lot faster and easier to pull out my wallet and whip out the correct card.

              Finally I don't understand this whole "I don't want to carry a wallet only my cellphone" thing. First of all until they put drivers licenses on contactless it would be illegal for me to be outside of my house without my wallet for all practical concerns, because how would I get there other than driving without a license? Next, assuming you're somehow legally outside without ID, in some states (although not mine) if you're the wrong skin color and you have no ID, the cops will put you thru absolute hell up to and including attempts at deportation ... or you could just carry your wallet. I could go to the bar without my wallet, thats fantastic, err uh, well actually I don't care, but I can't anyway because they'll want to card me, so I guess I'm bringing my wallet.

              It does seem like a very expensive solution in search of a problem.

            • by Luckyo (1726890)

              Credit cards don't have informational displays, or UI to allow for confirmation of the payment.

        • by jrumney (197329)

          If you lose your contactless payment device: the thief can spend till your daily limit

          One of the advantages to having this built into a phone, and not as a standalone card, is that you have input devices which can be used for authentication before releasing funds to third parties.

      • by SeaFox (739806)

        I say thank God for this!!

        I seriously don't want something in my phone that hooks in any way into a payment system whether it digs directly into my checking account..or even a special one.

        Cause you know if they added this feature you absolutely would be forced to use it. There would be no way at all of using your iPhone and without entering a preferred bank account and giving Apple explicit permission to use the Near Field payment system.

      • by timeOday (582209)
        Ha, I bought lunch at Burger King yesterday and couldn't even buy a milkshake for dessert without raising suspicion and an ID check due to running a second transaction too soon after the first. Compared to cash, electronic payment has far more options for preventing theft.

        Actually this whole thread sounds *exactly*like what people were saying 14 years ago, how they would NEVER shop on the World Wide Web.

      • by Candid88 (1292486)

        If you don't like it, how about simply not enabling the feature?

      • by nashv (1479253)

        Your lack of will power to control your finances is no reason for other customers to forego a new feature that they potentially find useful.

    • by arose (644256)
      There is a perfectly valid reason for this, it's much easier to hold on to very thin things!
  • by WrongSizeGlass (838941) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:10PM (#35498906)
    Extra Extra! Apple may or may not be including something that has been previously rumored in their next iPhone! Won't somebody think of the children??
    • by syousef (465911)

      Extra Extra! Apple may or may not be including something that has been previously rumored in their next iPhone! Won't somebody think of the children??

      I was so looking forward to the jet fighter that was rumoured to be part of the next release. But it seems the global financial crisis has left Apple unable to include a $200 million jet plane with a $600 phone. As a result I'm looking at purchasing Android.

    • Extra Extra! Apple may or may not be including something that has been previously rumored in their next iPhone! Won't somebody think of the children??

      EXTRA! EXTRA! Whiners bitch about lucrative Apple stories on Slashdot, still clueless about cause and effect!

  • Most Likely Reason (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Freaky Spook (811861) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:16PM (#35498960)

    Apple hasn't figured a away to get fee's from sellers and customers yet.

    • by Firehed (942385)

      That's the easiest piece. Apple becomes a merchant processor (actually, something closer to the issuing bank at their scale) and takes a cut out of the payment. Hell, they'd practically be a new payment network. They're already effectively giving you a tiny line of credit with the way iTunes works, simply for the sake of aggregating payments to minimize their own fees. Why not go all the way with it?

      Of course, they'd then have to deal with a truly absurd number of payments-related regulations, which I'll te

      • by cayenne8 (626475)

        Of course, they'd then have to deal with a truly absurd number of payments-related regulations, which I'll tell you from firsthand experience is something best avoided if you can help it. That's a whole lot of not fun.

        I'd guess they could set themselves up in a manner similar to how PayPal operates...and not have to mess with 'bank' regulations....?

        Seems to work well for PP so far...

        • I'd guess they could set themselves up in a manner similar to how PayPal operates...and not have to mess with 'bank' regulations....?

          Seems to work well for PP so far...

          Paypal has a bank license in the EU, so yes, they did have to mess with bank regulations.

  • by line-bundle (235965) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:19PM (#35499000) Homepage Journal

    Has this become the official iPhone gossip site?

    Every too often an article like this comes which has no substance. It's not news for nerds, it doesn't matter.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by MBCook (132727)

      I think that's a version of the problem. I don't see much in it for Apple. In the US contactless payments are not very common. There are a few systems (SpeedPay?) but I've never seen anyone use them. Carrying around a credit card is not exactly a hardship. The place where I think it would make the most sense is vending machines.

      I know contactless stuff is much more common in Japan and Europe. Do they use the same system, or would Apple have to build multiple versions? I do think that if they wanted to Appl

      • I don't know about the states, but Canada has wide adoption of contact-less credit cards*. In almost all the gas stations in my area, and many stores, I can simply hold up my wallet with my credit card in it to pay for things. No swiping necessary. This is a huge convenience IMO. I realize you may say "but how much work is it really to take the card out of your wallet, and swipe it?" Physically it's not a lot of extra effort, but the card readers often don't work the first time, and when you're freezing you

        • by vlm (69642)

          I can simply hold up my wallet with my credit card in it to pay for things.

          I detect the presence of singular. How does it work when you've got 3 contactless CC (the "main" the "backup" and the "shared family") and a bank issued debit/credit and a RFID drivers license and a RFID library card and one RF "door key" card for work and another RF "door key" card for the daycare front door? My wife has a couple merchant cards (Target card, etc). Then there's the RFID passport which I normally do not carry and a possibly contactless debit card linked to the cash account at my brokerage

    • That the biggest indicator of slashdot's downfall is that every single article posted is immediately met by a claim that the inclusion of said article indicates the site's downfall.

      • by Guy Harris (3803)

        That the biggest indicator of slashdot's downfall is that every single article posted is immediately met by a claim that the inclusion of said article indicates the site's downfall.

        Unfortunately, the old Slashdot drinking game at http://people.cs.uchicago.edu/~neilk/drinking.txt [uchicago.edu] appears to be gone, but perhaps it needs to be updated anyway. "Somebody posts a comment complaining about how Slashdot is going downhill and this story is an example" is probably a good one for the game; perhaps "I know I'm going to be modded down, but..." also belongs on the list, with an additional one for "Somebody says 'I know I'm going to be modded down, but...' and gets modded up".

    • by ModernGeek (601932) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:57PM (#35499272) Homepage
      Slashdot has been the official Apple gossip site ever since they announced Mac OS X.
  • hardly (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tumbleweed (3706) * on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:22PM (#35499030)

    Apple's decision to avoid it is a significant opportunity for Android phones. Apple is learning the wrong lessons from Microsoft.

    • by Nerdfest (867930)
      Lack of an industry standard? Look at the iDevice connector ... they seem to care little about standards when it's inconvenient. If Apple and Google both implemented the same NFC implementation it becomes the defacto standard. The way standards bodies are going (slow or corrupt) it's really the only way to get anything done these days anyway.
      • If Apple and Google both implemented the same NFC implementation it becomes the defacto standard.

        Or if Google just does it alone. Apple would appear to be making a serious blunder if the report is true.

        • Google couldn't do it alone either. All it would take is for a major bank or credit card company to back a different horse and you'd have a generation of cellphones with an obsolete payment system embedded in it. This is one of these things that requires extensive dealings behind the scenes to ensure everyone is on the same page first, which hopefully Apple (and maybe Google, who knows) are doing right now.

    • You are young my friend... all these lessons were learned BY Microsoft FROM Apple. Apple already screwed the pooch doing this same sort of stuff in the 80s. The iPod/iPhone have given them a second chance and they're doing it all over again.
    • Apple's decision to avoid it is a significant opportunity for Android phones. Apple is learning the wrong lessons from Microsoft.

      From my point of view they are the right lessons because it is about time for Apple to decline in prominence before they manage to do some serious damage.

  • Great disappointment. I was really hoping Apple would jump start the NFC revolution with the iPhone 5. What's the problem in not having an industry standard?! They would have CREATED one!

    • As it is, Google will create one. At the rates Android phones sell, there will be enough devices with NFC as Google implements it on the market within a year or so for large shops to take notice.

  • Many mobile payment vendors were (are) holding their breath for NFC on Apple devices.

    There is already the Galaxy, RIM has promised NFC. Apple would really push this over the top.

    I am really tired of carrying various cards for mass transit, etc. and I would love to consolidate these w/my phone.

    • by DJRumpy (1345787)

      Without a standard in place, I can't say I blame them. If Apple backs a technology that may change entirely over the course of a year, which in turn is based on hardware in the phones themselves, I can see why they are hesitant. It seems backwards that they wouldn't establish a standard first, and then go about putting the specs into their handsets.

      Why does it seem like they are going about this a bit backward? Not Apple in general, but the industry in general. Typically if there is a need for a standard, a

  • by bogaboga (793279) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:25PM (#35499068)

    Whereas I applaud Apple's continued success in the mobile arena, I doubt that its 'refusal' to implement NFC is that major a blow. You see, the tech world has learned to move on with or without Apple.

    But do not be surprised is Apple is continuously testing and improving this 'rejected' tech to later 'implement'.

    Do you think folks at Samsung, HTC and the rest are that sleepless over Apple's decision? I doubt.

  • by markdavis (642305) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:32PM (#35499130)

    Google doesn't seem to be having problems with the concept and is pushing it (with manufacturers' buy-in) into current Android phones now. Perhaps Apple is having the "not invented here" syndrome??

    From the article: "But Apple isn't completely abandoning the idea of mobile payments. Instead, the company plans to implement its own contactless payment technology,"

    Oh! So Apple just wants to find another revenue stream from their own proprietary "solution"..... got it! It has nothing to do with "industry standards", it has to do with trying to create and force a "standard".

    • Oh! So Apple just wants to find another revenue stream from their own proprietary "solution"..... got it! It has nothing to do with "industry standards", it has to do with trying to create and force a "standard".

      Another one wakes up (this has only been going on since the the dawn of computers). So now for your next step think about the fact that what you've just described is pretty much the whole point of most proprietary systems...

      • by markdavis (642305)

        Oh, I have been awake for a long time. I was pointing out the "irony" in the summary/article wording- as if Apple rejected it because of lack of "standards", which is ludicrous.

        I just still can't believe it is 2011 and we STILL can't get PIN codes attached to credit cards! I hope this "contactless" type concept requires their use (and can't be stored on the device, obviously)...

        • by Cimexus (1355033)

          Wait what? My credit card has had a PIN since the dawn of time (well, at least since I turned 18 and got my first credit card, around a decade ago...)

          • by markdavis (642305)

            Maybe a PIN number for cash withdrawals at an ATM machine, but not a PIN number that is required for purchase payments....

            Without a purchasing PIN, anyone can take your card (or often just the number) and buy things without hardly any challenge at all.

            • by Cimexus (1355033)

              OK so maybe not a decade, but I've had a PIN for use at the point of sale for purchases (i.e. swipe and type PIN, rather than swipe and sign) since at least 2005 (I know this for a fact as I was definitely using a chip-and-PIN card while living in London, and 2005 was my last year there). I've since moved elsewhere but all credit cards I've had since then have had one of those little chips in it and are capable of doing PIN-authenticated purchases.

              Admittedly though, in many countries, it's not mandatory to

              • by markdavis (642305)

                In the USA, I have never seen a PIN used with a credit card (and I have been using them quite a bit longer than you ;) ). Check/Debit card yes, credit card no. The most I have seen used was to require you to key in your zip code; which is not much security.

                And yes, if you can choose not to use it, of course nobody will- because it is not their money that is at risk... it becomes a "society" problem and we all end up paying for theft with higher prices and fees.

                • by Cimexus (1355033)

                  Ah, your previous posts didn't mention the US specifically so I didn't know where you were commenting from. That may well be the case in the US so I can't argue with that. I am in the US reasonably regularly but I tend not to use credit cards there so I just assumed it was like other places ... apparently not :)

                  All I can definitely say is that I've been using a PIN with a credit card at the point of sale for quite a few years now in the places I've lived (various European countries, Singapore, Australia). I

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      the new credit card terminals will have a 30 pin connector, you dock your phone and make your transaction. worries about vandalism of the 30 pin connector on vending machines are dismissed by Steve jobs, "that connector is indestructible! we have never had a failure of one!"

      • by c0lo (1497653)

        worries about vandalism of the 30 pin connector on vending machines are dismissed by Steve jobs, "that connector is indestructible! we have never had a failure of one!"

        And if it doesn't function, it is the users fault: they are griping the phone the wrong way.

      • by markdavis (642305)

        >"the new credit card terminals will have a 30 pin connector"

        OMG!!! Too funny! I nearly fell out of my chair :)

        +100 funny

    • Perhaps Apple is having the "not invented here" syndrome??

      More probably the "can't be the troll under the bridge owning the means of passage" syndrome.

    • Oh! So Apple just wants to find another revenue stream from their own proprietary "solution"..... got it! It has nothing to do with "industry standards", it has to do with trying to create and force a "standard".

      Keep in mind you're commenting on rumors by "sources." The hit rate of anonymous sources on Apple rumors is very (very!) low. AFAIK Apple hasn't officially commented on this.

  • No way (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:38PM (#35499150)

    Right now I'm very resistant to any sort of NFC device - too many "security" decisions seem to be driven by vendors who keep their heads intentionally planted in the sand. These folks seem to think we live in a world where the bad guys would never overpower a remote reader, where gathered data is then only transmitted over secure wireless networks, and where design decisions never trump best security practices.

    And no - I don't have any RFID-enabled credit cards.

  • 1. Get card with PayPass (or equivalent)
    2. Duct tape to iPhone
    3. Profit

    Actually, I just tried it out and mine fits inside the outer shell of my (non-apple) smartphone, looking at it you'd never know it was there...

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      No it's not the same. I had a nokia in 2004 that did this and you could see the balance, the transaction amount, and control if it was on or not.

      • by c0lo (1497653)

        No it's not the same. I had a nokia in 2004 that did this and you could see the balance, the transaction amount, and control if it was on or not.

        ;) Hey, I can't believe there isn't an app for that! ;)

  • by hawguy (1600213) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:42PM (#35499178)

    And by "Citing fears over a lack of an industry standard", they mean that they don't want to follow Google's lead with their NFC enabled phone, so instead they are working secretely with Nokia to come out with a competing standard, screwing over consumers who just want something that works -- much like the DVD-RAM/Blu-Ray debacle where no one could decide on a standard so early adopters had to pick one and hope they picked the industry leader.

    • Apple is not the industry leader in payment systems nor in cellphones for that matter (they lead in profit not in units shipped.)

  • by Bloopie (991306) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:42PM (#35499180)

    All I see is people complaining about this. But isn't this a good thing? Didn't anyone read the first few words in the summary, "Citing fears over a lack of an industry standard"?

    One of the biggest things people complain about with Microsoft (and other companies as well, including even Apple sometimes) is that they invent their own "standards" (or implement standards in ways that aren't in fact standard) and ruin the possibility of interoperability with products from other companies. That generates no end of woe. Isn't it the geek's dream to have IT companies adhere to industry standards?

    And here a company is actually paying attention to industry standards! But this is Apple. Slashdotters are going to complain. If they did the exact opposite and invented their own thing, Slashdotters would complain as well.

    • by jrumney (197329)

      One of the biggest things people complain about with Microsoft (and other companies as well, including even Apple sometimes) is that they invent their own "standards" (or implement standards in ways that aren't in fact standard) and ruin the possibility of interoperability with products from other companies.

      If you RTFA, that is exactly what Apple are doing - going off and creating their own walled garden version of NFC while other companies are working towards an open standard. Apples "fears over lack of

    • Apple are quite happy to ignore standards when it suits them (audio formats, power/USB connectors...). Let's not pretend that Apple are the bastion of device interoperability...

  • Nokia had several phones that did this. some massively old.

    I had a Nokia 3220 years ago when I was in europe and used it to pay for bus fare in germany.

    Nice to see apple and the others pulling a microsoft and trying to make an innovation something that is old tech.

    • And since Nokia was the market leader at that time it became wildly successful and the de facto standard and now everyone uses it ... oh wait that didn't happen. Maybe this offers a clue to why Apple don't want to jump the gun here.

  • by aztektum (170569) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @09:10PM (#35499352)

    Isn't Android the market leader right now? With Apple pretty much splitting 2nd place with RIM?

    It would seem to me that having this roll out in devices belonging to #1 would only strengthen their position.

    Or does the RDF extend to markets everywhere? Will businesses avoid implementing it due to the runner up not having it?

    I'm genuinely curious. Not trying to troll.

  • by SilverJets (131916) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @09:59PM (#35499702) Homepage

    The contactless payment system was introduced in Japan in 2004 by DoCoMo and Sony.

  • Paypass/Rfid chips can easily be zapped by a common household microwave. Now how do I do this with my phone?

    Actually, I'm totally okay with this as long as it stays as an opt-in feature. (tie your credit card(s) into your phone). Once Verizon starts billing me randomly for pizzas and gas, that's when I don my Slashdot trademarked tinfoil hat.
  • "No industry standard" means "Google is about to set the industry standard with their Google Checkout NFC consoles and all the NFC IP they are developing and acquiring, and we wouldn't want to encourage or condone that until Google has a good competitor in the NFC space".
  • Clearly they haven't had enough time to give it an Apple branded name. Firewire, Thunderbolt, PayField?

    The only thing all this rumor mill and speculation does is generate ad revenue for all the rumor sites.

  • next major step in both cell phone and payment technologies.

    It's been here for years. Huge step. Thanks for keeping up western cell phone companies.

  • by AdamInParadise (257888) on Wednesday March 16, 2011 @01:23AM (#35500766) Homepage

    The NFC industry suffers from two bigs issues.

    1. Huge installed base. There's already lots and lots of installed contactless systems : while many are supposed to follow standards, the standards are unfortunately not good enough to make sure that a NFC phone that would work in London would also work in Amsterdam.

    2. Unclear business model. NFC involves too many powerful stakeholders : SIM card manufacturers, mobile phone manufacturers, service providers (banks, transportation operators), mobile telcos ... They all want a vut of the action: making them all agree on a clear business model is very difficult.

    I hoped that the combined pressure and will of mighy Google and Apple would finally move things forward. Looks like the complexity of NFC defeated another big corp.

  • by michelcolman (1208008) on Wednesday March 16, 2011 @05:14AM (#35501572)
    Negotiations are still ongoing, but so far Apple has not been able to convince enough shops to give Apple a 30% cut of their revenue.
  • I wish I could feel better about apple. Every time I read abut how they are worried they are going to loose a niche, I feel like I'm getting bent over.

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