The advent of Apple Pay made it easier to make small purchases using your iPhone, but now the feature could be used to hold your driving licence.
Apple has long maintained that Apple Pay could store payment cards and passes, but now the the DVLA might allow you to do away with your wallet altogether.
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DVLA’s Morley teases Apple Wallet driving license
If the UK driving authority gets its way, plastic driving licenses might become a thing of the past. DVLA CEO Oliver Morley took to Twitter to tease a “prototype” of a feature that would see driving licences stored on your iPhone.
Morley said that the photo related to “something we’re working on.” However if it becomes reality the new driving license could lead to a huge change in how documents are used and issued.
The picture that Morley posted shows a driving license inside Apple’s Wallet app. This is where Apple Pay stores payment cards, tickets and loyalty cards.
Apple Wallet to replace physical counterpart
Apple has always said that Wallet could replace physical wallets, and Apple Pay has made the feature more useful. iPhones can now be used to pay for small purchases in many stores.
The electronic driving license shows the driver’s birth date, the date of issue of the license and when it expires. You can also see the driver’s name and a photo of them.
One year ago the DVLA got rid of the paper section of the UK driving license. Drivers now only receive a plastic card, but even that may soon go out of fashion.
Security concerns could discourage adoption
One thing that might discourage the adoption of digital driving licenses is the fact that such an image would be very easy for people to fake. If the police could be satisfied of your identity and ability to drive using only an image on your screen, it would leave the system ripe for abuse.
However the answer to such concerns may already exist in the form of a database which is used to check documents which are presented. A similar system is already used by nightclub bouncers, who check an individual’s ID against a system before deciding whether or not to let them in.
So here’s a little prototype of something we’re working on #drivinglicence pic.twitter.com/a5eItrdiNI
— Oliver Morley (@omorley1) May 13, 2016
It seems logical that a similar system could be implemented for driving licenses. This would allow for quick, simple checking procedures, and means that the Apple Pay driving license would represent a link to a piece of information rather than a way of showing information in and of itself.
As long as security concerns can be calmed, we could soon be using our smartphones to identify ourselves. Of course it may be a while until the DVLA can stop offering plastic licenses to those who don’t own a smartphone, but it could be a major step towards uncluttering our lives.
Many people end up carting around a huge slab of cards, receipts and cash, otherwise known as a wallet. With the move towards digitizing every aspect of our lives, we can cut down on the amount of objects that we have to take with us everywhere.
Personally I can’t wait to get rid of my wallet and start using technology to make my life simpler. Fair play to the DVLA for supporting innovation and working on such a scheme.