Report Claims this is the Year of the NFC iPhone

Reports that Apple will include Near Field Communication, or NFC, in the next iPhone have routinely preceded device updates, and so far have proven to be wrong. Now there's word that this time Apple really, really, will include NFC in the iPhone 6, which is expected to be introduced on September 9.

Report claims Apple is brining NFC support to the iPhone 6Report claims Apple is brining NFC support to the iPhone 6

The latest report comes courtesy of insider sources speaking with Wired, and those sources claim Apple will tout NFC as one of the biggest features on its latest smartphone. Assuming Apple does include NFC support in the new iPhone, it'll most likely be part of a wireless payment system that turns the device into a digital wallet.

So far, Apple has stayed away from NFC in part because there isn't a universal system for using the technology as a payment system. The company has also developed its own payment system that relies on WiFi and iPhone apps -- just as it is doing in its own retail stores.

Apple also has its Bluetooth-based iBeacons hardware that can be used to track shoppers in stores, and could also work as part of a digital wallet payment system. That, combined with a digital wallet app and WiFi networks, could work as an alternative to NFC that wouldn't require retailers to make a major investment in supporting wireless payment options.

That said, Wired's sources seem certain NFC is finally coming to the iPhone and that a new digital payment system that relies on the technology will be a big part of Apple's unveiling.

Apple is expected to host a special media event on September 9 to introduce the iPhone 6 and its first entry into the wearable technology market. The company has yet to send out media invitations, and hasn't confirmed the event is happening.

Despite the silence from Apple, the timing fits for a September 9 announcement because that falls in the same timeframe as previous iPhone announcements, and it sets the ball rolling for pre-orders on September 12 with an official rollout on September 19.

Despite reports that Apple will include NFC in the iPhone 6, it doesn't seem likely. Apple has resisted the technology for years and has been actively working on its own alternative. It doesn't seem likely the company would change course now and abandon its efforts to build a system that doesn't involve NFC.