Is Apple’s next big earner an NFC shopping app for iPhone 5?

Just when you thought Apple couldn’t do any more to empty your pockets, it plots to make shopping easier than ever

“Nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Well, Benjamin Franklin, we’ve got a couple of things to add to your list. One is spending too much money on gadgets, the other that Apple has more than enough cash already.

But if Apple gets its way, we’ll be splurging more and further lining its pockets in future. It’s just been granted a patent for an “on-the-go shopping list” that’s deeply embedded in the iPhone’s operational psyche, allowing you to build lists and compare prices by tapping NFC tags, bar code scans and product pictures.

Not only does this latest NFC-related patent strengthen rumours that the iPhone 5 will be the first iPhone to carry NFC, it poses all sorts of questions about Apple’s future plans as a retailer. Our money says Apple’s long game is to pair this up with its Passbook voucher app to enter the retail market on a grand scale. Not that we’ve got much money left.

[via Engadget]

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