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iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending Aug. 30

John Cox | Sept. 3, 2014
The iOSphere became still more convinced that mobile payments via iPhone are just days away with the expected Sept. 9 unveiling of iPhone 6.

The iOSphere became still more convinced that mobile payments via iPhone are just days away with the expected Sept. 9 unveiling of iPhone 6.

In part, the new optimism is based on photos purporting to show the iPhone 6 logic board with a chip from NXP Semiconductor, which offers a variety of short-range near-field communications (NFC) components. And there was a dramatically vague "report" that Apple and American Express have signed some kind of deal to do something with regard to mobile payments somehow.

Also this week, rumors of an inexplicably redesigned iPhone charger which is assumed to be related to the expected bigger battery for the expected bigger phone, or phones. Finally, an investigation about whether a silkscreened part number on a low res photo is an 8' or a B' results in the dispiriting conclusion that it's an 8 and therefore the iPhone 6 will have "only" 1GB of RAM.

You read it here second.

iPhone 6 will have mobile payments, with American Express as partner

Re/code reports that Apple and American Express have struck some kind of agreement about some kind of plan for mobile payments, according to the post by Jason Del Rey.

Del Rey cites "sources familiar with the talks." If they are familiar with the talks, they shared precious few of the details to make sense of them. Del Rey simply doesn't explain, presumably because he doesn't know, what the agreement actually is, or how Apple' s mobile payments system will or might work.

"Apple's new payments system is expected to let iPhone 6 owners use their phones in place of credit cards, debit cards or cash to pay for goods in brick-and-mortar stores," according to Del Rey. "Customers will present their phones at the checkout counter of partnering retailers to transmit payment information to complete a purchase."

It was recently reported by The Information, a news site, that Apple and Visa had reached an equally vague agreement.

None of these rumor reports outline what these partnerships actually entail, or how "presenting the phone" would actually result in a completed, verified transaction. It is widely expected that Apple will make use of the verified credit cards in its massive database of iPhone users with Apple IDs; and eventually Apple's Touch ID authentication. But however the mobile payments system is set up, it will have to be at least as secure as, and probably more convenient than, swiping a physical credit or debit card in a card reader or using cash.

Apple and a group of retailers and card processors presumably could make use of existing networks and backend payments systems. But the front-end user experience, which is Apple's obsession, will have to extremely simple and extremely reliable.


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