I had the pleasure to write the Beginner and Intermediate chapters on Passbook (and PassKit of course) in “iOS6 by Tutorials“.
Passbook and PassKit in iOS 6 are the hottest technology coming out from Apple right now, and are groundbreaking for more reasons than might imagine. Passes are the result of some awesome fusion.
Four separate technologies all combine together to deliver a completely new experience to iPhone users:
- The new iOS framework PassKit
- The new Passbook app bundled with iOS
- Apple’s push notification service (this time delivery is guaranteed)
- Your own server code!
Passes are very different from any other Apple technology you’ve used before. What makes them unique is that passes are a concept wrapped around a file format. It’s up to you to create a pass file, deliver and present it to the user in any way you like. And the choice of technology and programming language to do that is also up to you!
Once you master the passes file format you can create all kinds of the different passes for your customers and distribute them to their end users via different channels.
Let’s look at what kind of passes you can create for iOS6.
Boarding passes & tickets
The boarding pass features origin and destination in big font size, and also a transit type icon – on the example above a little plane do denote that the boarding pass is for a plane flight.
You can freely choose the name and type of the fields on the front of the pass, but their position and font size are pre-defined per pass type.
Note: Just saw that it looks like Virgin has already decided to support Apple’s Passbook, if not already at the launch of iOS6, than pretty pretty soon. https://twitter.com/VirginAustralia/status/244986753184849920/photo/1
Sephora had 15,000 customers downloading Passbook passes on the first day they launched!
On this example image you see the discount coupon pass – it features a strip with a large image for background and a large title. In the case above it’s a coupon, which entitles the bearer to one free hug.
What better purpose for the iOS6 passes than being tickets to concerts, shows, super-raves, and book signings? And in the case of conferences or other type of event with registered guests – you can also feature a photo of the owner of the event pass on the front page. Really cool.
Just whatever card you can image
Further than the types I listed above you can create a store card (with a prominent field on the front to show the customer how much remaining store credit they have) and also e “generic” type of pass, that you can use for whatever purpose you’d like. All of the pass types has its own decoration for easy recognition when in a full deck like on the image above.
But there’s much more to iOS6 passes than there is to ordinary old school paper passes!
Enter 21st century passes
Meet the advanced features of the passes in iOS6:
- dynamic tickets – they show the latest info about your concert or flight
- they notify you whenever there’s new information coming from the ticket server
- they are connected with the rest of the iOS apps – you have interactive phone numbers, emails, addresses, appointments opening in the appropriate app
- passes could be multilingual, internationally formatted and personalized
- passes are very secure
- easy to integrate in bigger connected systems
More information on iOS6 passes
While I can’t publish more of the text of my Passbook chapters on Touch Code Magazine, I can recommend two sources you can read up on:
and of course
“iOS6 by Tutorials” – where you can learn everything you need to become a pro in Passbook/PassKit. As a bonus if you get the book you will also have the chance to read my chapter on the new UIKit integration of NSAttributedString, and beside it a ton of the other useful information (like AutoLayout, GameKit challenges, modern Objective-C syntax, iTunes InApp purchases, and much more)The post was originally published on the following URL: http://www.touch-code-magazine.com/introducing-passbook-for-ios6/