Apple Adds PLCC and Loyalty Cards, Passbook to Become Wallet

In 2014, we wrote about the beginning signs of the Apple mobile wallet and how it will use Passbook. The fact that Passbook app was fully integrated with other iOS apps was a clear sign of things to come. We talked about the possibility of Passbook having APIs for centrally locating just about all gift cards, loyalty cards, reward cards, incentive cards and ticketing. Much like the iOS Newsstand and Books apps this is more of a conduit for innovations. We also brought to you the first coverage of Apple patent that revealed Apple Pay 2.0 with Coupon Redemption, Ticketing, Et Al.

The genius "Benjamin Vigier"

Passbook is partly the work of the designer of Starbuck’s very successful 2D barcode mobile payment solution, the mobile wallet and NFC genius Benjamin Vigier now working at Apple. This guy is a powerhouse that designed Paypal Mobile, Sprint MyMoneyManager, Mobile Wallet applications for 2 top #5 US carriers, mFoundry Mobile Banking WAP platform, NFC Wallet for a top 3 US bank and led SanDisk mobile commerce and NFC activities.

As of today, there are more than 2,500 banks supporting Apple Pay. Apple Pay is now close to be accepted at more than 1 million US locations. According to Jennifer Bailey, VP of Internet Services, Apple, merchants accepting Apple Pay are seeing more than 2X increase in checkout rate among customers using Apple Pay in apps.

So what is the big news

Apple Pay yesterday also added Loyalty cards from top retailers to the list. Customer, in addition to linking debit and credit cards can also include store credit cards from companies like Synchrony, Kohl’s, JCPenney, and BJs to their Apple Pay account. With this inclusion, Apple Pay can help customers present the right card so that customers never miss a reward. Furthermore, Apple Pay will be accepting cards from Discover Financial Services as well. Likewise, Square is expected to release a new Apple Pay reader in partnership with Apple, which will have contactless NFC payment capability.

Apple is also renaming its Passbook to Wallet. Henceforth, Passbook will become a one-stop solution for all iOS users’ where they can store everything right from credit, debit, and loyalty cards, to boarding passes. Expect lot of details from Let's Talk Payments on integrating PLCCs in wallet and merchant loyalty program integration. We have gone to great lengths to understand this topic and will be coming up with more analysis soon.