Rumor: iPhone 5 will use NFC for remote computing
Imagine if you could fit all of your Mac's personality -- settings, documents, and even applications -- into your iPhone, and then be able to have any Mac turn into your Mac. According to a source who talked with Cult of Mac's Leander Kahney, the iPhone 5 is expected to allow you to easily perform this type of magic through a Near Field Communication (NFC) capability built into the device.
NFC's initial use would be to turn the iPhone 5 into a passcode-protected electronic wallet or security passkey (like a SecureID fob) that would communicate via the short-range wireless technology to other compatible devices. Apple has recently hired a number of people who specialize in NFC and submitted patent applications for uses of the technology.
Kahney's source said that Apple is working on a way of letting Mac users simply wave their NFC iPhone near an NFC-equipped Mac, and that other machine suddenly acquires the personality of their home or office Mac. If NFC Macs become commonplace in hotel rooms, offices, and other public locations, you wouldn't need to carry even a lightweight MacBook Air with you. Just with a wave of your NFC iPhone 5, you'd have your computer anywhere that there was a Mac.
Once you walk away from the remote Mac, it reverts back to its initial personality, with all of your information disappearing from the Mac but securely stored on your iPhone. As with most rumors, there's a good chance that this technology might not make it to the next iteration of iPhone, but it would sure be an impressive and effective way to carry your Mac anywhere you go.
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