There are a lot of new smartphones and other devices that are coming to market with support for Near Field communications. NFC is a technology that a lot of the biggest companies in the smartphone industry are starting to integrate into their devices. NFC allows the user of the smartphone to pay for things in stores using their smartphone for instance.
Apple has a long history of looking past what some of the industry is doing and rocking to its own beat. A new rumor suggests that Apple may be doing that again with NFC tech. The iPhone 5 is coming soon and a new rumor fresh from the mill is claiming that the new smartphone will use Bluetooth 4.0 rather than NFC inside. The new MacBook Air and Mac Mini 2011 edition both use Bluetooth 4.0. the rumor hints that since the spec was only adopted officially a year ago the fast tracking of the tech may be to allow the iPhone 5 to have a device to interact with.
Bluetooth 4.0 features the Bluetooth Low Energy spec inside that allows communication between Bluetooth devices with about half the power use of older Bluetooth technology. In fact, with certain types of use Bluetooth 4.0 can slurp down as much as one hundredth of the power output of older BT specs. ITProPortal thinks that BT 4.0 might even be able to rival NFC. I'm betting there isn't much NFC tech in stores to need the tech for most of us between the launch of the iPhone 5 and the launch of the next iteration of the iPhone.