Apple could improve Apple Pay using the U1 chip, according to a new patent

The U1 chip that several iPhones, the Apple Watch series 6 and the HomePod mini carry gives for much more than what we are currently seeing. The patent discovered by AppleInsider explores the possibility of selecting the right card at the right time based on the location of the U1 chip.

The right card at the right time

The patent entitled “Location-based credential selection for wireless transactions” explores the option of use the U1 chip to provide the location component to the Apple Pay system. A use that would join the selection of recipients in AirDrop and that can be used by car manufacturers with the CarKey API.

Apple exposes that having to look for the correct card when paying, as well as completion cards and others, is not ideal and proposes a system with which the iPhone would present the correct credential or credit card when approaching the terminal. This terminal or reader would have an ultra-broadband technology, similar to that of the U1 chip, to be able to determine the distance and “announce” what type of card expected.


Given this information, one could choose the entry card to a restricted area, the subway card or the loyalty card of a specific franchise or establishment. The whole process would be automatic and only authentication would be required, we understand that through Face ID in the case of the iPhone or by double clicking in the case of the Apple Watch, to carry out the operation.

The final version of iOS 14.5 is near: when will we see its launch

The truth is that although Apple Pay was initially conceived to store a credit card, it is increasingly common that we have more than one. In addition, in the Wallet app we can store flight passes, transport cards, Apple Store credit cards and more and more authentication systems. In this context, a selection system that we want to use at all times is, without a doubt, a good idea.

Leave a Comment