Is remote access to apps coming with iPhone 5?

Nov 2, 2010
Finance

In the face of the growing popularity of Android from Google (GOOG) and the wildcard appearance of Windows Phone 7 from Microsoft (MSFT), what does Apple (AAPL) have up its sleeve for iPhone 5? Leander Kahney reports in Cult of Mac on a tip about the new iPhone generation being equipped with a Near Field […]

In the face of the growing popularity of Android from Google (GOOG) and the wildcard appearance of Windows Phone 7 from Microsoft (MSFT), what does Apple (AAPL) have up its sleeve for iPhone 5?

Leander Kahney reports in Cult of Mac on a tip about the new iPhone generation being equipped with a Near Field Communication (NFC) chip to transform the phones into an electronic wallet or passkey. But there’s more to this strategy, especially using NFC for remote computing.

By waving an NFC-equipped iPhone at an NFC Mac, the Mac will load apps, settings and data. It will be as though they are sitting at their own machine at home or work,” says Kahney. When the user leaves, and the NFC-equipped iPhone is out of range, the host machine returns to its previous state.”

NFC is in wide use in Asia and is expected to catch on in the USA if Apple adopts it.

The remote computing angle is a new one and unconfirmed. But Apple has been looking hard at NFC, hiring NFC talent and patenting NFC technology. Chris Davies notes in SlashGear that previous patents have suggested Apple is looking at NFC payment systems for cashless purchases that would also link with custom iOS apps for more in-depth personalized information.

Cult of Mac’s unnamed source says Apple has been looking for a way for a user to carry their home folder with them, but has encountered serious tech challenges with ballooning iTunes and iPhoto libraries. The next-generation OS X Lion is expected to incorporate cloud-computing elements to make it easier to tap into those huge files.

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Analyst Sarah Clark of SJB Research, who edits Near Field Communications World, says NFC offers quick and easy authentication systems, but the downside is a slow data transfer rate.

“The usual idea is that you would use NFC to set up the link between the two devices and then do an automatic hand over to a different protocol for doing the actual transfer of data – e.g. Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, TransferJet etc. – and that’s what I imagine would be happening here,” she told Cult of Mac.

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