"probably good news for Apple and its customers." Only if they dont mind paying 30% extra for their purchases. (Which most of them wont, one assumes).
The Independent newspaper has been talking to network operators, and concluded that Apple is planning its own version of NFC for 2012. Sources at "several UK operators" apparently told the paper that Apple is not planning to add Near Field Communication technology to the next iPhone, despite Google dropping NFC into the Nexus …
Yes Sony have a track record of developing new formats, but most of them are in response to market demand and Sony are happy to cooperate on developing technologies (e.g. CD with Philips, DAT with HP) and license their technology to other companies (Bluray, Betamax, etc.), unlike Apple who only allow Mac OS on "Apple branded hardware".
The Betamax system was fairly popular in the US and Japan, so no reason for Sony not to use its own technology (especially since it was just a half scale version of their professional video format). Even on video, Sony are happy to license formats they didn't develop (like VHS) and let their customers choose; so Sony are not really like Apple.
Apple not following industry standard?!? I'm shocked!
Seriously though, they pull this crap so much, it would be news if they actually did follow a standard. At this point, I expect them to put their own crap in place. There is a reason they are so profitable, and it isn't because they make better devices...
The mighty, but slow, U.S. Federal Trade Commission will most likely weigh in on this one possibly under restraint of trade.
Of course Mastercard and Visa aren't without their 'resources' unless Jobs wants to start his own plastic business.
Sony lost with Betamax simply because the US Porn industry grew weary of putting everything out in 2 formats, and picked one (the wrong one, but that's another debate). And that's why VHS 'won', and why Sony vowed never to fall for a stunt like that again.
So unless the porn industry is going to decide to back Apple and accept payment by Apple only, there isn't really any comparison between these two examples.
(wipe that image of yourself waving your iPhone over a naked women out of your head now ...)
My personal concerns are about:
1) If payments are processed by iTune, it means that card details are stored online. Very bad when customers want to make payments and there’s no internet connectivity.
2) Having an embedded Secure Element also means that some transaction can be processed even when the mobile phone battery is flat (Cards, such as SUICA in Japan or OYSTER in London use passive induction to work, which means they can be used when the mobile phone is unpowered. This couldn't happen if the travel cards are stored on iTunes).