Apple's Passbook-based iTunes Pass system for adding money to your iTunes account launched in Japan only days ago and now is available in the United States, too. The system lets users pre-load thier iTunes account in retail stores via a Passbook card. Those credits can then be redeemed for iTunes and App Store purchases, much like gift card balances work today.
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iTunes Pass is limited to purchases through Apple because it's another way to add money to your iTunes account. Presumably Apple has bigger plans for this which will turn our iPhones into proper digital wallets.