A newly-published patent application from Apple (via AppleInsider) describes an approach to enable users to ‘present’ media material bought by means of iTunes and from their own libraries to various other individuals with near-field interaction (NFC), recommending that the innovation could at some point discover a method onto iOS devices in the near future. The patent, which was submitted back in March of this year and stretches over a lengthy 63 pages, explains a system wherein:

… an offer and approval of a chosen gift file is achieved between a gifter device and a getting giftee gadget making use of a near-field communication (NFC) connection.

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The filing reveals a photo of a generic iPhone with an additional chip (labeled 50 in the above diagram) on both the front and back of the device which could potentially allow individuals to exchange content with NFC. The patent describes two approaches of ‘gifting’– either by buying the media directly from the iTunes Shop and sending to an additional individual’s Apple ID or by sending out a copy of already-owned media to an additional gadget, which is currently not available on all iOS gadgets.
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The patented technique includes digital media protection secrets, such as a DRM key, that permits the ‘talented’ file to be just played on one gadget in accordance with copyright regulations. This resembles the existing approach of gifting with the iTunes Retail store, nonetheless the transfer would be over NFC, not the Internet or 3G. The NFC chip may enable information transfer speeds of up to 560 Mbps, according to the filing, and could work with the new TransferJet method, first developed by Sony, which enables faster transfer speeds in between devices. The new chips will have a range of 2– 4 cm, so individuals don’t physically have to touch phones.

Apple has so far avoided NFC innovation, instead stepping gingerly into scannable digital tickets, coupons, gift cards and loyalty cards with its own Passbook service introduced with iOS 6. This patent suggests, however, that the company is seriously considering NFC as a function in upcoming devices. NFC is already offered on several other devices, including those running Android, BlackBerry OS and Windows Mobile, and it allows users to attain a lot more with their smartphones, including spending for items and services (examples include Visa’s payWave and Mastercard’s PayPass) and utilizing their smartphones on public transport, which is already being tested in several UNITED STATE cities, including New York and Los Angeles.