News by Andrew Kameka on Friday January 24, 2014.
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The Android monopoly on the Isis mobile payments system ended today with AT&T's announcement that it is now selling a specially made case for the iPhone that can make payments at NFC-enabled sales terminals. With the Incipio Cashwrap Case, AT&T customers can install a secure element chip in the case that turns the iPhone into a mobile payment solution.
Isis requires an NFC chip in order to process payments, but Apple has chosen to not include NFC in any iPhone model. AT&T partnered with Incipio to develop the Cashwrap as a workaround that can support tapping to pay with an iPhone in the mobile wallet case. Users will have access to the Isis app for mobile payments and loyalty rewards as if they were native features.
Photos of the Cashwrap make it appear rather bulky, and costs range from $65 to $69 dollars, so some users may decide that it's simply not worth the hassle. However, if you want to make mobile payments and aren't willing to leave the Apple ecosystem, this is your only option. The Incipio Cashwrap is designed to work only with AT&T models for the iPhone 4/4s and iPhone 5/5s. It comes in black, grey, and pink.
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.