updated 12:21 pm EST, Fri November 30, 2012
New retail gift cards can be loaded up to $500
Apple has made a pair of significant changes to the way iTunes gift cards work. The first is the introduction of new variable-value cards at retail. These can be worth anywhere between $15 and $500; to choose the amount, a buyer asks for help during checkout. Sources for 9to5Mac claim that "at least one supermarket chain and one retailer" are launching the cards today.
A new feature of iTunes 11, meanwhile, is the ability to redeem a card using a webcam. Users simply show the back of the card to the camera, at which point iTunes scans for a recognizable code. If a photo scan doesn't work, the app can still fall back to keyboard input.