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Apple is working on a way for people to pay businesses directly with their iPhones, according to a new report.
The smartphone giant has been working on the feature since 2020, following the purchase of a Canadian startup Mobeewave that was building ways for smartphones to accept credit card payments without contact.
This would most likely be done using an NFC chip, which is the same hardware that facilitates Apple Pay.
Businesses would be able to turn their iPhones into a payment terminal, receiving payment by tapping a contactless card or another iPhone to the back of the device.
Currently, a third-party terminal is necessary to communicate with the phone via Bluetooth.
It is unclear whether this payment option will be a part of Apple Pay, or a new service. The team working on the feature has been, according to Boomberg, been within Apple’s payments division since 2020.
The new feature could come in a software update, potentially within iOS 15.4 which launches early in the spring.
In 2019, Apple launched the Apple Card which activates a virtual payment system allowing users to pay with their device.
It touted two per cent cash back on purchases with the ApplePay service, no fees, an app to manage related finances, and a focus on data privacy.
The physical card has no visible number. Instead, the card’s number is stored on a secure chip inside the iPhone, which generates virtual numbers for online or over-the-phone purchases requiring a number.
Apple did not respond to a request for comment from The Independent before time of publication.