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Tap-to-pay could get more capable and more complicated

Credit card reader with a message stating Tap to Pay and logos for various payment cards on a gas pump in Lafayette, California, May 9th, 2024.
Photo: Smith Collection / Gado / Getty Images

At some point in the future, a new “Multi-Purpose Tap” concept will let payment cards or devices like smartwatches and phones accomplish multiple things at once when using NFC. With this in play, a customer in a store might tap their phone with Apple Wallet or Google Pay on a terminal that simultaneously checks their ID if they’re buying booze, add points to their loyalty account, pay for their goods, and provide them with a digital receipt.

Some of the concept’s goals are laid out today in a PDF from the NFC Forum, the nonprofit consortium of tech companies that guides and promotes the NFC standard and which includes Apple, Google, and Sony among its roster.

Image: NFC Forum

NFC Forum slide on Multi-Purpose Tap.

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