iOS 12 may enable new NFC features in Apple iPhone
According to a recent report, iOS 12 may enable additional NFC features in supported Apple iPhone models, which will give some third-party developers access to the secure wireless chip. Starting with iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, Apple added an NFC chip in its mobile devices, which the company has largely restricted to Apple Pay - Apple's mobile payments system.
Unlike Android devices, where third-party developers have free reign on using NFC features, Apple has tight control over how the NFC capabilities of iPhone are used. However, if the reports are true, then iOS 12 will give third-party developers more options to exploit the NFC chip - like making the iPhone act as hotel door key or serve as a virtual transit card for easier transportation.
There are hotels that are already using iPhone as the door key. However, they using Bluetooth Low Energy protocols, which are not as secure as an NFC contact point.
Similarly, using your iPhone as a transit card is not a new one. In Japan, Apple sells iPhone 7 and all models of iPhone 8 and iPhone X with FeliCa chip installed that allows users to use their iPhones to access the public transit system in that country. Likewise, United Kingdom allows you to travel on the Underground by tapping your iPhone.
The Information claims that Apple may announce this news to developers at the company's annual developer conference (WWDC 2018) in San Jose on June 4. The publication further adds that Apple is already testing these features at Apple Park in partnership with HID Global that developed the campus' security system.
It is also not clear on whether the new NFC features will be available for everyone, or it will be locked down to select partners only. We will update you about the new NFC features in iOS 12 as soon as we get more information.