While Apple has provided few details about the inner workings of its Apple Pay service, a new patent filing may provide some tantalizing details.

Today, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office posted Apple’s application for “Methods for Adjusting Near Field Communications Circuitry during Mobile Payment Transactions.”

The document doesn’t use the term “Apple Pay.” But in other respects, it seems to contain all the elements of the system that Apple described last month when it announced the service. These include a system that allows for touchless payments and uses near field communication (NFC).

From there, the document takes you down a rabbit hole, where you can totally nerd out on the details regarding security, tokenized payments, encryption, and the architecture of the whole system:


Above: Diagram from Apple’s patent for an NFC-based payment system.

Keeping in mind that we can’t be 100% sure these are the actual details of the system Apple is deploying, it’s still worth a close study if you’re a developer wanting to get an understanding of how all of this may work under the hood.

Via: AppleInsider