Photo courtesy of Apple

Apple has upgraded the Apple Wallet such that businesses that require age or identity verification will be able to accept and verify virtual IDs stored on the wallet creating a use case for the feature that has been struggling to get adoptions.

Apple Wallet’s Virtual IDs Get a Boost

Apple first launched the driver’s license and state IDs in the wallet in 2021 after which Arizona was the first state to adopt it. This enabled Arizonans to add their driver’s license or state ID to Apple Wallet and tap their iPhone or Apple Watch to seamlessly and securely present it at select TSA security checkpoints in Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

After that, the capabilities were extended to Colorado, Georgia, and Maryland with the promise of the states of Connecticut, Iowa, Kentucky, Oklahoma, and Utah to follow along with Hawaii, Mississippi, Ohio, and the territory of Puerto Rico.

However, beyond the TSA checkpoints and lanes in participating airports, virtual IDs have had very few uses in real life thus these added capabilities are timely and important to the success of the feature.

According to Apple, businesses such as age-restricted bars and clubs will be able to accept IDs in Apple Wallet starting with iOS 17 without the need for additional hardware, which will simplify processes like checking IDs for the purchase of alcoholic beverages or confirming an ID for car rentals, among other things.

Similar to how TSAs currently work, iPhone users will need only place their device close to the iPhone of the company in order to view what data is being asked and whether or not the recipient will save it.

Then, in order to share their information back with the company, the users will then be prompted to authenticate and give their permission using Face ID or Touch ID. Apple further states that the data will be transmitted securely between the user’s iPhone or Apple Watch and the identity reader to prevent third parties from accessing it.

The process will also require biometric authentication to confirm that nobody else can view or show their ID in Wallet after adding it to the device in the first place.

The connection between a user’s iPhone or Apple Watch and business device will be facilitated via Bluetooth which Apple states is in compliance with the ISO 18013-5 standard.

To further support the adoption of this new upgrade, Apple is releasing two APIs for businesses, developers, and organizations to use in order to integrate the capability to accept IDs in Wallet into their systems. This will help cater to different firms that may have different needs for identity and age verification.

Moreover, Apple won the patents for the driver’s license, state ID, and Touch ID a week ago in a journey that began in 2020. First, the company received the patent for Apple Wallet and the idea of having state recognition credentials virtually.

More recently, the company has succeeded in patenting the idea of using biometrics for access to the saved credentials.

More iOS 17 updates

Photo courtesy of Apple

Aside from virtual IDs, iOS 17 will also come with an upgrade on Apple Cash that will enable users to set up recurring payments either on a weekly, biweekly, or monthly basis. This will make it convenient for regular expenses like rent and other bills or for parents paying their children’s allowances, says Apple.

Additionally, users will be able to top up their Apple Cash directly from their designated bank accounts.

With regards to navigation, users will be able to browse offline maps using Apple Maps. To achieve this, users will have the ability to download a selected location on their device then when they are offline, they will be able to check their expected arrival time, and get turn-by-turn guidance for driving, walking, taking public transportation, and cycling while offline and other Apple Maps capabilities.

From the WWDC, Apple has revealed that iOS 17 will come loaded with upgrades and improvements on the various native apps including Apple Music, Apple News, Fitness+, Apple Podcast, Apple Books, and others hence users should anticipate a whole new experience.

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