Leaked Next Generation iPhone Front Assembly Reveals NFC Chip?

BY Jason

Published 27 Aug 2012

As we get closer to the next generation iPhone launch, more parts seem to be leaking out.

Apple.pro has found a photo on PhotoBucket, which reportedly shows a full-assembled next generation iPhone  front assembly.

A closer look at the image reveals a component that we haven’t seen before. Macotakara believes that the component could be near field communication (NFC) chip next to the front facing camera.

AppleInsider also points out that the square component covered by EMI shielding is in line with the dimensions of currently available NFC packages like NXP’s 5 millimeter-by-5 millimeter solution.

In previous “leaked” photos, Apple was shown to have swapped the locations of the rumored handset’s front-facing camera and IR proximity sensor, thus leaving a sizable space to the left of the earpiece. 

iOS 6 comes with a new Passbook application to collect stuff like boarding passes, movie tickets, shopping cards etc. that you’d normally keep in your pocket or wallet. If Apple’s 6th generation iPhone has NFC chips then Passbook could turn it into a digital wallet. It could allow users to store credit card, bank, or other digital payment information on the new iPhone via the Passbook app and conduct transactions securely using NFC with authorized devices.

As we noted earlier:

If Apple can make its 400 million credit card holding customers comfortable with the idea of using their iTunes account for real world purchases, NFC would just be another technology that works behind the scenes.

We’ve heard that Apple was adopting a wait and watch approach towards mobile payments, however the fact that Apple’s CEO Tim Cook has said that the Passbook app is a key feature of iOS during the company’s conference call for the third fiscal quarter of 2012, seems to indicate that the NFC could be one of the major new features of Apple’s new iPhone.

What do you think?

[Apple.pro via AppleInsider]