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With so many methods for mobile payments being put through the wringer, why not add another one? MasterCard and ING Group have introduced a new payment method that interweaves both mobile and internet payments. Sound confusing? We’re just getting started.

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Analysts have been predicting the rise of NFC for a while now, but expectations vary wildly. The main driver that’s widely touted is mobile payments, but the number of NFC-enabled devices in circulation is still relatively small. We take a look at some potential uses for NFC and ask: what is holding it back?

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Photo.bugz/Flickr

By now, we should have been able to make contactless payments with pretty much any mobile phone, at just about any supermarket or restaurant. Or at least that’s what... many of us expected for 2012. Unfortunately, NFC payment technology has been slow to progress over the past couple of years.

There are still relatively few smartphones enabled for NFC use, whil...