Forbes magazine came out on Friday to announce that Apple will indeed feature Near Field Communication (NFC) technology into its latest incarnation of the iPhone. This technology will allow iPhone 5 users to make payments for goods with their smartphones. This will make it much easier for many consumers, who have already made smartphones a permanent feature of their lives.

The Forbes article also counters months of speculation that Apple would not integrate NFC into the iPhone 5. In fact, many tech blogs and magazines seemed to believe that this was the case until Forbes dropped the bomb. It was earlier thought that Apple had no interest in equipping the iPhone 5 with NFC because it was not sure about the role of this technology in the market today.

However, Apple is not the only company trying to make headway into this area. Carriers such as AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon launched Isis, a NFC-based national mobile payment network.

Rivals such as Google have also begun integrating NFC into their next generation smart-phones. Google’s Nexus S smartphone, based on the Android Gingerbread OS will features NFC. RIM also already has plans to launch a variety of devices with NFC functions. If anything, Apple seems to be playing catch-up.