Since its debut a little over a week ago, Apple's Passbook has not quite developed the expansive list of retailer users, as was expected. To date Passbook is currently supported by Fandango, United Airlines, MLB, Sephora, Target, Walgreens, Ticketmaster, Lufthansa, and Live Nation.
While the list is currently underwhelming, it is only a matter of time until the Passbook takes off, and retailers should be jumping on board by developing their own Passbook applications.
It would serve these companies much better to get involved during the earlier stages than to wait and be rushed into developing an application. Here are four reasons why retailers should implement the Passbook and why it is bound to catch on:
1. The High Volume of Demand for the iPhone 5
After the iPhone 5's opening weekend, Apple announced that the phone had broken all previous iPhone sales, as they had sold over five million copies. Though the 5 million is short of some analysts expectations of between six and ten million sales, it is nothing to scoff at.
The demand for the phone is extremely high and will not die down in the near future. Most of these millions of users will inevitably use the Passbook application, and they represent a massive market that needs to be tapped.
2. The Rate at which Consumers Download Applications
A week after implementing Apple Passbook, Sephora reported that 82,000 beauty insider cards had been added to Passbook. With the demand for the Sephora Passbook application so high after just a week, one can only imagine what it will be like given time.
3. No Glaring Downside to the Passbook
Apple developed the Passbook to be their answer to the direction that mobile payments were headed in. Even though many people feel that NFC will be the future of payments, Apple decided that the timing wasn't right.
While I still believe it was a mistake not to add NFC to the iPhone 5, Passbook has its advantages. It allows users to get discounts, store loyalty card, store boarding passes etc. It's essentially the step right before actually using your phone to pay.
One of the advantages to this is, unlike NFC, there isn't a high concern of security. The user won't be paying, so he won't have to worry about transactions and the safety of his account.
4. It's a win-win situation for consumer and retailers
Both consumer and retailers are benefitting from the use of the Passbook. Consumers are happy because of the discounts and easy access to things like loyalty cards. Retailers are profiting because the use of the application is helping to generate more in-store traffic.