In the latest of what’s sure to be a spring and summer filled with ceaseless rumors of whats under the hood in the next iPhone, Apple Insider released an article covering posts by China Times that reported NFC and fingerprint scanning in the next iPhone, logically dubbed the 5s.
Fingerprint scanners are nothing new, but as this article states, combining them with NFC for personal authentication of NFC related actions could have some very interesting implications and may speed up NFC adoption and consumer awareness drastically.
Today, the chances of your average customer being able to interact with an NFC tag in your store is still under 10%, even in major metropolitan areas where new tech adoption rates are highest like NYC, San Francisco, London, Sydney, etc. Even though growth rates and handset sales velocity figures all point to Samsung and Android gaining majority share in most developed markets, sometimes you need to look beyond the numbers. Many of the brands we talk to and work with, particularly those in high-end consumer retail, tell us that their customer-base adoption rates of iPhone to Android or non-iOS devices skew much more heavily toward Apple products than industry averages indicate. In some cases its close to 8 to 1 in favor of Apple.
Now add to this Apple’s track record of popularizing and simplifying technology (remember, they actually didn’t invent the tablet, they simply made it popular and accessible via the iPad.) and NFC in the next iPhone could have a profound impact on retail adoption and use of NFC among the spendiest consumers.
Until then, get ready for a gamut of iPhone 5s rumors, as history indicates they’re just getting started.