July 11, 2012

Apple wins a major patent for iTravel

Apple has received a major Granted Patent that relates to transportation check-in and, more particularly, to employing near field communication for identification and ticketing by transportation providers.

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 23 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first granted patent report of the day we mainly focus on a major patent relating to iTravel, Apple's transportation check-in system.

The timing couldn't be better for this patent as Apple recently announced that a new feature called "Passbook" was coming to iOS 6 this fall. Scott Forstall, Apple's Senior Vice President of iPhone Software, stated that Passbook would include travel services such as a boarding pass and express check-in which today's iTravel patent covers. The Near Field Communications (NFC) aspect of the patent will also be important for Apple's future iWallet application. To round off our report, we cover two of Apple's latest industrial designs wins and list an additional ten utility patents for the super geeks and legal professionals amongst us to review.

Apple's iTravel check-in system will work with Macs, but more importantly, with iOS devices such as the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Ticketing and identification information will be stored on the iOS device and transmitted, such as via near field communication, to another electronic device. The handheld device may be used to check into flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, trains, buses, and so forth.

Get the full story at Patently Apple

Read also "How Apple’s iTravel patent could threaten Android’s NFC future" at Wired