Well, we can’t say we didn’t see this coming.
According to a report by 9to5Mac, Apple is preparing to add additional payments functionality to its Passbook app.
The report states that Apple will begin rolling out an updated version of EasyPay, its point-of-sale system software, to Apple retail employees. Employees will then be able to scan customer Apple Store payment card codes directly from an iPhone or iPod. 9to5Mac speculates that in addition to payments functionality, the Passbook-EasyPay scanning method could allow consumers to check in at the Genius Bar, pick up in-service items or more.
The news comes just around one month after Apple launched its quasi-mobile wallet with its iOS 6 update, but confirms something PYMNTS.com has thought for a long while: this is Apple’s way around NFC, and could be the way they enter the mobile wallet industry.
One problem we don’t have an answer for yet: EasyPay may run into trouble with scanning codes directly from iOS device displays. But as the report suggests, and as common sense would seem to indicate, Apple like has a solution to this problem, or it wouldn’t be gearing up for a major POS move.
Do you think Apple is going to keep pushing Passbook into the mobile wallet space? Would you use an Apple Store Passbook card to make an in-store purchase? Let us know in the comments below.