Google has announced that it is transitioning the Google Pay API for Passes into a more robust offering called simply the Google Wallet API. This updated API provides developers with new functionality and support for a more broad set of use cases.
With the original Google Pay API, the range of available pass types that developers could issue was limited to offers, loyalty cards, gift cards, event tickets, boarding passes, transit tickets, and vaccine cards. These categories certainly handled most use cases, but not all, leaving out options like membership cards or insurance cards. With the new Google Wallet API, developers will now be able to choose a generic card type that can be used in more unique situations. The company’s blog post announcement noted that “If it is a card and has some text, a barcode or a QR code, it can be saved as a generic card.”
Google has also added the ability to group passes. This new functionality is helpful in situations where users may have been issued multiple cards intended to be used in rapid succession, think airline travel with a layover.
Lastly, it is essential to note that while Google doesn’t expect any backward compatibility issues, the company requires developers to utilize the new “Add to Google Wallet” button as outlined in the updated button guidelines.