Let’s face it; there were a lot of issues and concerns regarding the new Apple iOS 6 release. Not only were the Apple maps less than impressive, but some users are confused about a new app that popped up on their home screen: iPhone Passbook. What is it?

iPhone Passbook

iPhone Passbook

 

Passbook: The Basics
Passbook is Apple’s mobile payment solution. This “book” allows users to store “passes” from local and national merchants on their iPhone. This can include boarding passes for airlines, movie tickets, store loyalty cards and even coupons.

Getting Started with Passbook
When a user launches Passbook for the first time, they will have nothing but empty books in front of them. From there, they will have to redirect themselves to the App Store to integrate with apps. Users are not forced to just find their passes through the App Store; they can also email them or find them using their Safari browser on the iPhone and iPod Touch.

Once a user has found a pass they need to add, they can just click “Add” and it will automatically be stored in the Passbook. Users can first preview all Passes before storing them. This gives the user the opportunity to read through any special requirements, details about the promotion or read over restrictions before adding it in.

Some Passes have options that allow users to request automatic updates. This will allow Passes to update based on a user’s location or if a new deal replaces a previously stored deals in a user’s Passbook.

The Issue
Though Passbook sounds great at first glance, there is one big issue: merchants. How many merchants have actually integrated Passes into their systems? While some major merchants like Subway, Starbucks, Fandango and Ticketmaster have already created Passes, other smaller merchants or even big corporations have skipped on making Passes for consumers. Therefore, as of right now, most consumers will find minimal passes to use, which makes other coupon apps more desirable at this time.

 

[Image via ayrion]