Analysts at Pacific Crest Securities (PCS) have joined the Apple mobile payments guessing game, speculating that recent security moves by Visa will see the iPhone 6 go contactless.
Last month reports surfaced claiming that Apple is in talks with Visa ahead of a potential mobile wallet launch when the iPhone 6 arrives this autumn.
In a report, seen by Barrons, PCS analysts say: "We think a partnership between Apple and Visa would make strategic sense and believe an announcement could happen as early as this fall."
The report argues that the spur for collaboration could be Visa's new token service, which replaces the 16-digit number found on plastic cards with a numeric substitute that can be stored directly on mobiles, facilitating transactions without sharing sensitive information.
In a note to clients, seen by MarketWatch, one of the report's authors, Josh Beck, writes: "Apple could use its large stockpile of iTunes accounts and cards on file (about 800 million), along with Passbook and a new token partnership with Visa, to provide a highly scalable payments platform."
However, while the PCS report says that Visa's new token technology offers a "clearer path for Apple to become a major player in mobile payments" the firm cautions that "we still see relatively little opportunity to generate profits that would be meaningful at Apple's scale".