iOS 11 allows the iphone’s NFC chip not only for Apple pay

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Apple has opened a number of features to third-party developers in this iOS 11 update to enable communication between NFC devices.

Apple has opened a number of features to third-party developers in this iOS 11 update, including a framework called core NFC. This means that Apple allows third-party apps to read the NFC tag's ndef (Data Interchange Format) to enable communication between NFC devices. This expands the application of the iphone's NFC chip to more scenarios.


iphone and NFC


Strictly speaking, Apple has added NFC hardware to the iphone 6 and iphone 6 Plus in 2014 to support the Apple Pay mobile payment system. But Apple is not open to the SDK that third-party apps access to the iphone's NFC controller. Until the iphone 7 and iphone 7 plus began to support reading NFC Ndef tags. Communication between NFC devices can only be achieved by reading the NDEF (Data Interchange Format) label.

iOS 11 allows the iphone's NFC chip not only for Apple pay

So even if Apple provides core NFC to third-party app developers in iOS 11, only iphone 7 and iphone 7 Plus can be used to expand NFC in third-party apps after the upgrade of iOS 11, and older versions of the iphone will still be able to brush Apple Pay.


NFC has so many areas to apply, why doesn't apple open the NFC Ndef tag for the iphone? The main reason is to be safe. Apple knows that Apple Pay must first gain consumer trust if it is to change the consumer's payment habits. Like Apple's limited fingerprint sensors before, Apple limited access to NFC controllers, reducing the iphone's exposure to other NFC devices, allowing consumers to easily and comfortably enjoy the convenience of Apple Pay. From Apple's point of view, the security issues of Apple Pay are far more important than the benefits of open NFC. Apple Pay has been in the market for three years and has not disclosed any security issues.


Last summer, some Australian banks tried to force Apple to open the NFC Controller's access to establish its own mobile payment system. Apple rejected the request to protect Apple's pay consumers in order to reduce security risks.


As Apple's pay continues to expand around the world, Apple is starting to consider making the iphone's NFC more effective, in the context of ensuring Apple's pay security.

iOS 11 allows the iphone's NFC chip not only for Apple pay

The iphone's NFC system is made up of multiple components, some of which are NFC controllers, used to communicate with other NFC devices, and other parts of security components, like bank vault. When the payment function is used, the external device accesses both the NFC Controller and the security component. However, if the read and write functionality is limited to the NFC Ndef label only, access to the NFC controller is required and no security components are required. This is a key difference because Apple will never have access to third-party app open security components.


It is worth mentioning that when adding a credit card or debit card, the actual card number is neither stored on the device nor stored on the Apple server. The system assigns a unique device account number, encrypts the account and stores it securely on the secure element security chip on the device. Each transaction is authorized with a one-off unique dynamic security code.


How the iphone's NFC can be used

iOS 11 allows the iphone's NFC chip not only for Apple pay

NFC can be used on product security labels. For example, for expensive luxury goods such as wine security. Wuliangye in a few months ago announced the introduction of NFC anti-counterfeiting labels, using "one-core dual-frequency" technology, not only allows consumers to scan NFCA tags to identify authenticity, but also allows logistics warehouse personnel to read merchandise data far away, easy to manage inventory.


NFC Scan product labels can also get more detailed product information, such as product components, historical prices and so on. When visiting the museum, you can also scan for more information about the exhibits.


NFC can be used to find a car in a parking lot. We can put a NFC chip on a car or bicycle, stop the car and sweep the chip through a special app, and then open the map to navigate to the parking location. The technology has been applied to the bikes by Dutch college students, and the NFC chip sticker costs 50 yuan.


NFC can be used for inductive membership cards. Recently, the Beijing-style chain bakery announced support for Apple-inductive membership card. This membership card is carried out automatically after the Apple Pay Card, and in the future every time the use of Apple Pay in the taste of more than the United States will automatically accumulate member points to the membership card. Consumers can be very handsome points.


NFC can be used for public transport cards, subway cards and other stored value cards. It is not difficult to popularize the NFC technology itself, and the NFC capabilities of Apple's open iphone will benefit the popularity of NFC technology.