On July 10, 2012, Apple was granted US Patent 8,215,546, "System and method for transportation check-in."
The key claim limitation is that a photograph of the traveler must be retrieved by the verification system (e.g., airline check-in kiosk) via the NFC interface of the handheld device (e.g., iPhone) for verification.
1. A method for transportation ticketing check-in, comprising:
- prompting a traveler to place a handheld electronic device comprising a display and a plurality of wireless communication interfaces within range of a near field communication (NFC) reader,
- wherein the display is configured to display a graphical user interface,
- wherein each of the plurality of wireless communication supports a respective communication protocol, and
- wherein one of the plurality of wireless communication interfaces comprises an NFC interface;
- retrieving ticketing and traveler identification information from the NFC interface of the handheld electronic device via the NFC reader; and
- verifying the traveler's identity using the retrieved traveler identification,
- wherein verifying the traveler's identity comprises comparing a photograph retrieved from the handheld electronic device to the traveler.