Next iPhone won't have NFC, analyst says

An analyst suggests the next iPhone will be less of an update than we initially thought.

Though Near Field Communication (NFC) is all the rage among phone manufacturers right now, an analyst says Apple will not include the new technology in the next version of the iPhone.

The information was revealed in a note sent by Bernstein Research to clients Monday morning, according to Business Insider.

No NFC Now, But Maybe Soon

There have been rumors that Apple will include NFC in a future iPhone--which model that will be, however, is up for debate. Some reports indicate it will arrive with the planned refresh to the iPhone 4 this fall, while others suggest NFC won't appear in iPhones until 2012.

The Cupertino company has spent a lot of time and research on RFID, which is the short-range wireless technology that NFC is based on. Earlier this year, Apple sought a researcher with experience in RFID, and made RFID-related acquisitions.

However, it shouldn't surprise anyone that Bernstein believes the next iPhone will be NFC-free. After all, the planned refresh of the iPhone 4 is expected to be a performance upgrade, rather than a full update (similar to the iPhone 3GS).

Apple's Patience Makes Sense

Not including NFC in the next iPhone upgrade may be a smart move for Apple, given the current state of NFC. NFC is still very much in its infancy--Google, Microsoft, and various wireless carriers are currently testing mobile payment platforms, but none are past the testing phase.

Another technology that Apple may ignore in the next iPhone update is LTE. Wireless carriers began rolling out the next-gen wireless technology earlier this year, but availability is currently limited to metro areas. Chipsets supporting LTE are also battery intensive--a reason Apple has cited for not being more supportive of the technology.

For more tech news and commentary, follow Ed on Twitter at @edoswald and on Facebook.

This story, "Next iPhone won't have NFC, analyst says" was originally published by PCWorld.

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