Get out your iWallet? Looks like iPhone will double as an RFID tag reader!

Apple Patent: iPhone Display May Double as an RFID Transponder

Media_httpwwwpatently_jhlfe

 
Patently Apple first noted Apple’s NFC patent trend back in late 2009. Then the patent downpour arrived in April and May of 2010 which covered everything from embedding NFC/RFID technology into home appliances and devices right on through to the iWallet. But a European patent filing of Apple’s that was published late last week provided us with a little background. It appears that Apple’s work on bringing this technology to the iPhone and iPod touch actually began right after the iPhone debuted in 2007. Today’s report covers this patent which discusses using a cellphone (iPhone) and Audio/Video Player (iPod touch) as both an RFID tag reader and a tag. At the heart of this patent, Apple states that “the RFID antenna could be placed in the touch sensor panel, such that the touch sensor panel could now additionally function as an RFID transponder.” This is the technology that could be at the heart of Apple’s future iWallet and iKey.

Is this the precursor of all things Apple? This patent looks like they are preparing to couple this with their iWallet technology that allows for transactional taps. Should Square be listening for footstep? Or does it make them an easy aquisition?