The iPhone 5 is likely to come packing NFC capabilities to keep up with Google's NFC-toting Galaxy Nexus. But it looks like Apple will also mount a challenge to Google Wallet with its own iWallet NFC payment system. The revelation comes from an interview with MasterCard boss Ed McLaughlin in an interview with Fast Company.
Apple has already shown its intentions to move into wireless payments when it introduced EasyPay systems in US Apple stores. Now McLaughlin has hinted that it will join the NFC fray, saying he doesn’t know of a company that isn’t in the process of making their gadgets PayPass ready.
Although he declined to comment on Apple's specific plans, he also didn't deny the company's involvement, fuelling speculation that the Cupertino-based iPhone maker is indeed developing an NFC payment system, probably using its secure and well established Apple ID and iTunes payment systems as a back end.
"When we have discussions with our partners, and they ask us not to disclose them, we don't."
Australia has been slow on the mobile phone NFC trend, with the Commonwealth Bank as yet the only provider with NFC technology built around the iPhone and Mastercard's PayPass payment platform. Visa partnered with ANZ to undergo a four-week trial of the technology early last year, Woolworths has committed to rolling out the readers across its chain of stores, while main rival Coles has no plans to introduce the technology.