Get Ready For Apple Pay Based NFC Access And Ticketing For Trains, Planes, Buses, Subways And Events

Apple Pay Ticketing

Passbook is already a significant ticketing system for transportation. In some cases more then 10% of airline tickets are on Passbook with some airlines, in some very select markets.

Apple has been filing patents based on ticketing and access control using NFC and a secure and encrypted payments channel for almost a decade. The one that is most direct in surfacing these elements is System and method for transportation check-in filed in the innocent days of September 30, 2008 and well before the great startup payments disruption explosion/implosion. Apple’s practical and pragmatic, slow and studied approach was at play far longer then anyone truly understands:


There is provided a method and system for transportation check-in (e.g., ticketing and identification) via near field communication (NFC) using a handheld electronic device, such as a cellular phone or a personal media player. The handheld device may store and transmit travel reservations and traveler identifications using a travel management application. Various methods may be employed to acquire the reservation and identification information on the handheld device. For example, travel reservations may be made via the management application or may be retrieved from an email, a website, another NFC-enabled device, or a carrier-provided confirmation number. User identification may be acquired by scanning a radio frequency identification tag embedded in a government-issued I.D. In another embodiment, an I.D. number may be entered via the travel management application, and the user’s identification information may be downloaded from the issuing authority.

Additionally, some travel providers charge passengers a fee to check luggage. Fees may also be assessed for certain large and/or heavy checked items. Generally, payment is due at the time the luggage is checked, or during traveler check-in. Other fees may also be assessed at check-in, for example, if the traveler(s) request a different travel arrangement than originally reserved. Accordingly, after determining fees to be assessed, the traveler may be requested to pay the fees via the check-in device (block 210).For example, the traveler may be prompted to pay the assessed fess using a credit card or the NFC-enabled handheld device 40. That is, the traveler may be asked to select a payment method by choosing one of several options available. If the user selects to pay by credit card, the user may be prompted to insert a credit card into the check-in device, enter security information, and approve payment. In another embodiment, the user may select to pay fees via the handheld device 40, as described in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/286,488, entitled 'PEER-TO-PEER FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS,' to Lin et al., filed on Sep. 30, 2008, now published as U.S. Patent Application Publication No. 2010/0082481 A1, the entirety of which is incorporated by reference herein.

The travel management application may then request a payment method, as illustrated on a payment screen 326 in FIG. 17. In the illustrated embodiment, the user may have several credit cards and/or bank accounts stored on the handheld device 40 to enable purchases via the device 40. The stored payment methods may be displayed as user-selectable buttons on the screen 326. For example, a 'Visa' button 328 may enable payment with a Visa credit or debit card; a 'MasterCard' button 330 may enable payment with a MasterCard credit or debit card; a 'Discover' button 332 may enable payment with a Discover credit card; and a 'Checking' button 334 may enable payment directly from a checking account. In addition, the balances of the available payment methods may be displayed to facilitate the user's selection of a payment method. Additional payment options, such as, for example, Bill Me Later, PayPal, a frequent flyer account, an unsaved credit card, or additional saved accounts, may be accessed via an 'Other' button 336.

This is just part of the hidden use cases of Apple Pay 2.0 and beyond. Ticketing is a clear extension and I have identified over 250 more. I assert this again, this is the largest startup opportunity Apple has ever created in its history.

Your Apple iOS device will do far more then payments, it may very well by your reliable, secure and legal ID.