Passbook Passes Now Support NFC… If You Use Them On Android


PassWallet, an app that allows Android devices to use passes created for Apple’s Passbook service, has been updated to add supper for NFC. Users can now “beam and redeem” all kinds of passes if they have a supported handset, something Apple’s iOS devices — which don’t support NFC — cannot do.

PassWallet was created by Attido to allow Android and BlackBerry users to take advantage of Passbook files developed for iOS. Apple’s service lets users turn their coupons, tickets, loyalty cards and more into digital .pkpass files, which negate the need to carry a physical copy in their wallet.

Now Attido has teamed up with Skycore, the developers behind CodeReadr, a nifty barcode scanner, to add NFC beaming to its application.

“Passes stored within PassWallet normally present pass IDs as barcodes for scanning but can now also beam pass IDs via NFC and have those IDs validated and redeemed with the CodeReadr app on NFC-enabled Android devices,” the partners told NFC World.

“Apple created the Passbook standard for card, coupon and ticket delivery to iOS devices. My team built PassWallet to fill the gap for the Android platform,” Attido’s Andy Nugent said. “We then expanded the technology to support NFC redemption on Android through our partnership with the CodeReadr team.”

Skycore CEO Rich Eicher believes that the new functionality has the potential to offer a “fast, secure and seamless tap-to-validate process for passes,” one that could greatly improve the functionality of service like Passbook. To prove it, Skycore has created a video that shows the feature in action.

Apple iPhone is over five years old now, and the company continues to shun NFC technology. Passbook has been designed to work without it, but Attido and Skycore are proving how much better it could be if NFC was supported. And this is just a basic example — imagine how NFC could enhance Passbook if Apple got behind it.