The Wallet app, with Apple Pay and cards configured
|Initial release||September 19, 2012|
iOS 9.1 / October 21, 2015
|Operating system||iOS 6 through iOS 9.1|
|Platform||iPhone and iPod Touch only|
|License||Same as the iOS version with which it is bundled|
Apple Wallet (Wallet for short, formerly Passbook) is a mobile app included with the iOS operating system that allows users to store coupons, boarding passes, event tickets, store cards and (starting with iOS 8.1) credit cards, loyalty cards, and debit cards via Apple Pay. It was designed by Apple Inc. and was presented at the 2012 Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on June 11, 2012. The app first appeared on iOS 6 on September 19, 2012.
Wallet displays Aztec, PDF417 and QR 2D barcodes and Code 128 1D barcodes beginning with iOS 9. Each digital coupon or ticket is known as a "pass". When the user launches Wallet for the first time, a brief introduction screen appears with a button inviting users to browse apps on the App Store with Wallet integration. Passes can also be distributed online via Safari, sent to the user via email, or scanned using the built-in scanner in Wallet.
Passes are synced between iOS devices using iCloud, and OS X 10.8.2 and later also support opening passes to be sent to users' iOS devices. Although the app is available in iOS 6 or later, it is only available on iPhone and iPod Touch, but not on iPad.
Wallet has the following features:
- Displays 2D barcodes of following types: Aztec, PDF417 and QR.
- Displays 1D barcodes of following types: Code 128 beginning with iOS 9.
- Triggered by location. Up to 10 locations can be added to each Pass. A location is programmed as GPS coordinates (longitude, latitude, and altitude) and/or iBeacon UUID (The UUID is a Universally Unique Identifier which is a 32 ASCII character code or a code automatically generated from a name using the PassKit API).
- Triggered by time of pass.
- Localisation of the pass. Up to 35 languages can be stored per each pass in Wallet.
- Pass changes can be pushed via the Apple Push Notification Service by the pass provider, or manually updated by the user themselves.
Several third party developers have created similar apps for other operating systems, such as Pass2U Wallet or PassWallet for Android and BlackBerry, that support importing and viewing Wallet passes. Windows Phone 8.1 also supports Apple's pass format as well, although dynamic updates are not supported. Some issuers of passes also support viewing the passes through any web browser.
Passes exist in a larger ecosystem, because passes are created as a package. The package is a pass template, that is created with a pass signer, along with relevant data and a private key. Passes can be updated at any time using the PassKit API and an iOS app can interact directly with passes stored in Wallet.
In its simplest form, an interaction (or transaction) between a pass and a system is facilitated by a 2D Barcode or the modern QR code although it requires the customer to initiate the activity.
In late 2014, the first known implementations utilizing the iBeacon wireless geofencing started to appear in retail locations in the US. The iBeacon solutions allowed the retailer to broadcast an unsolicited lock-screen notice onto smartphones within Wi-Fi range, which is about one thousand feet.
In 2015, Apple incorporated the ability to present a loyalty card in Wallet to a point-of-sale terminal via NFC. Walgreens enabled this first with their Balance Rewards loyalty program; customers can add add their card to Wallet through the Walgreens or Duane Reade mobile apps and tap their phone to the terminal when prompted for their rewards card.
Passes can be distributed via email, SMS, MMS, social media, an app, and as QR codes.
- Trew, James (June 11, 2012). "Apple unveils iOS 6 at WWDC, launch apps with Siri, Facebook integration, Maps". Engadget. AOL. Retrieved September 22, 2012.
- http://www.passsource.com/info/new.php What's new in Passbook with iOS 9
- "Apple Passbook and its potential impact on the travel industry". Tnooz. June 19, 2012. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
- "iOS What's New: Passbook". Apple Inc. Retrieved September 26, 2012.
- "PassLocales". Archived from the original on August 10, 2014.
- https://www.passsource.com/info/#view New version of PassSource.com offers web views of passes
- "Getting Started with Passbook" (PDF). Apple Inc.