Eight states agree to put drivers licenses and state IDs in Apple's wallet

Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma and Utah just took some of the friction out of air travel.

From "Apple announces first states signed up to adopt driver’s licenses and state IDs in Apple Wallet" posted Wednesday on the Apple Newsroom:

Apple today announced that it is working with several states across the country, which will roll out the ability for their residents to seamlessly and securely add their driver’s license or state ID to Wallet on their iPhone and Apple Watch. Arizona and Georgia will be the first states to introduce this new innovation to their residents, with Connecticut, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Utah to follow. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will enable select airport security checkpoints and lanes in participating airports as the first locations customers can use their driver’s license or state ID in Wallet. Built with privacy at the forefront, Wallet provides a more secure and convenient way for customers to present their driver’s licenses and state IDs on iPhone or Apple Watch.

“The addition of driver’s licenses and state IDs to Apple Wallet is an important step in our vision of replacing the physical wallet with a secure and easy-to-use mobile wallet,” said Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet. “We are excited that the TSA and so many states are already on board to help bring this to life for travelers across the country using only their iPhone and Apple Watch, and we are already in discussions with many more states as we’re working to offer this nationwide in the future.”

“This new and innovative mobile driver’s license and state ID initiative with Apple and states around the country will enable a more seamless airport security screening experience for travelers,” said David Pekoske, TSA Administrator. “This initiative marks a major milestone by TSA to provide an additional level of convenience for the traveler by enabling more opportunities for touchless TSA airport security screening.”

My take: OK, Massachusetts, what are you waiting for?


  1. Jeff Galanti said:
    This, like student IDs, will be totally underappreciated by the analysts. Because there is not money changing hands, they cannot see how much stickier this makes Apple’s spider web. People who become accustomed to whipping out their phones to show their IDs will become more inclined to use Apple Pay and to upgrade their iPhones. In the analogy of the snowball rolling downhill, this makes for wetter, stickier snow!

    September 1, 2021
  2. Rick Johnson said:
    This is another value added game changer if the phone remains locked in the license screen so that law enforcement cannot look through your phone from their vehicle. Please confirm that there is a safeguard against this.

    September 1, 2021
  3. 25 major cities allow riders of their transit systems to use Apple Pay at the turnstile. My guess is nearly 1 billion live in or near those giant cities alone. Express Transit mode or Apple Pay with authentication quickly gets commuters on the train, ferry or bus. The iPhone is very popular in DC as a digital wallet for SmarTrip pass users.

    September 1, 2021
  4. John Konopka said:
    I have mixed feelings about this. I don’t want to hand my phone over to anyone. If the drivers license could work like Apple Pay that would be cool. I could wave my watch or iPhone over the officer’s reader and they would get a secure copy of my license.

    September 1, 2021
    • Robert Varipapa said:
      From what I can tell, your iPhone will remain locked when using the Wallet, similar to using airline boarding passes. No need to unlock (and if your on some government watch list, probably better to use your hard copy license!)

      September 1, 2021
  5. Kirk DeBernardi said:
    My take: What are we all waiting for?

    Just as Apple Pay has slowly, yet steadily become a lifestyle norm to the savvy, why not all the other stuff that resides in our real wallets.

    Grossly behind is the many ways in which the pass – ticket – loyalty card, etc. issuance is lagging way behind with the blame laid squarely at the feet of the issuing agent’s software ineptitude or outright laziness.

    Oh please, let’s all get with the party. It’s high time.

    What could be “stickier” than what resides in your wallet?

    September 2, 2021

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