Is Apple’s Passbook Ready For This New Feature?

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) may finally be ready to put its new Passbook app is use for making payments, starting with its own retail stores. An updated version of Apple’s mobile point-of-sale system software will arrive later this month for the company’s store employees, allowing them to capture payment card codes from customer iPhones and iPod touches, according to 9To5Mac.

While Apple’s plans for releasing a consumer-facing Apple Store app update to support Passbook cards is still unclear, the company may also be on its way to enabling that feature as well. The blog speculated that the iPhone maker could also theoretically expand the Apple Store-Passbook integration beyond cards, for instance, using it to sign in to Genius Bar appointments or to pickup items that are in service at the Genius Bar. Apple currently allows customers to purchase items such as accessories via their iTunes accounts through the Apple Store iOS app’s EasyPay feature.

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Apple released Passbook alongside iOS6, calling it a simple way to store boarding passes, tickets, coupons, gift cards, etc. The app was designed to enable a user to use an iPhone or iPod touch to check in for a flight, enter a movie, or redeem a coupon. It is also time- and location-aware. Passbook is currently integrated with several external applications on the App Store, including Fandango Movies, Live Nation (NYSE:LYV), MLB.com, Ticketmaster, Walgreens (NYSE:WAG), Lufthansa, United Airlines (NYSE:LCC), American Airlines, Gyft, Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX), and Airbnb.

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