Here’s how to add your driver’s license to your iPhone and Apple Wallet

Here’s how to add your driver’s license to your iPhone and Apple Wallet

Here’s how to add your driver’s license to your iPhone and Apple Wallet

Most airlines will let you use a digital version of your boarding pass, but some states now allow you to clear airport security with your driver’s license or other accepted identification stored on your iPhone or Apple Watch.

Instead of rooting through your pocket, all you have to do is pull out your Apple Wallet.

“Adding driver’s licenses and state IDs to Apple Wallet is an important step in our vision to replace the physical wallet with a secure and easy-to-use mobile wallet,” said Jennifer Bailey, vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet. In a 2021 statement.

It’s still not a universal game-changer: While 12 states have committed to digital IDs, only three officially support them. And while the airport you depart from may accept your Apple Watch license, it may not be treated with the same courtesy on the return trip.

The Transportation Security Administration is accepting the technology at some airport security checkpoints. So it’s really a matter of when, not if the option will become standard nationwide.

Here’s what you need to know about putting your driver’s license in your Apple Wallet, including how to do it and which states recognize digital IDs.

Read more: Security has delayed the deadline for obtaining real ID at the Airports

How do I add my driver’s license to Apple Wallet?

To add an ID to your Apple Wallet, tap the “plus” button at the top of the screen.

Dan Avery/CNET

Apple introduced the technology to upload your ID to your Apple Wallet in iOS 15 for iPhone. The process is similar to how you would add a new credit card.

First, tap the “plus” button at the top of the Wallet screen. (If you have an Apple Watch paired with your iPhone, it will also ask you about adding a license to it.)

You’ll then scan your physical driver’s license with your iPhone’s camera and snap a selfie, which will be “securely submitted to the issuing state for verification,” according to Apple.

You will also be asked to make a series of facial and head movements “as an extra security step”.

Once your ID has been verified by the issuing state, it will be added to your Wallet.

To be able to add your license or ID to Apple Wallet, must be issued from a participating state. In addition, you will need:

  • iPhone 8 or later, or Apple Watch Series 4 or later, with this The latest version of iOS or WatchOS
  • Face ID or Touch ID is turned on
  • An Apple ID with two-factor authentication turned on
  • Your device region is set to US
Driver's license program in Apple Wallet

For now, only residents of Arizona, Colorado and Maryland can upgrade their licenses.

Dan Avery/CNET

Also, only with passengers TSA PreCheck have the right to flash digital licenses on the boarding pass, According to the TSA websitealthough he said the agency plans to add options for other passengers in the future.

Only one license or ID can be added to an iPhone and paired Apple Watch at the same time.

Which airports accept digital ID?

Apple originally announced it in 2021 that eight states they were participating in the program, and they increased it to 12 this year.

But those are states committed Accepting Apple Wallet IDs, not currently.

Right now, only Arizona, Colorado, and Maryland accept the digital ID feature, and only at certain airport security checkpoints:

  • Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport
  • Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport
  • Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Utah have agreed to support the initiative, as has Puerto Rico, although exact timelines have not been announced.

Other states are expected to join the list: last year Bailey said Apple was “already in discussions with many more states.”

And in November, the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles said it was “exploring” the option of digital ID.

“There is a condition that has created a study committee on the idea and they are still investigating,” spokeswoman Maranda Williams. he told the StateA news station in Columbia, South Carolina.

Aside from Apple’s efforts, some states allow residents to upload their driver’s licenses to their phones through state-run apps, for example. Louisiana’s LA Wallet. But these are for driving and age verification and are not yet accepted by the TSA.

TSA screen on an iPhone


How do I use my license stored in my Apple Wallet at TSA?

To present your digital ID, tap your iPhone or Apple Watch on the ID reader at the security checkpoint.

You will then be asked to authenticate your identification with Face ID or Touch ID.

If successful, a check mark should appear on the screen.

According to Apple“You don’t have to unlock, show or hand over your device [to a TSA agent].”

Is this technology safe?

According to Apple, it is.

The company says the program uses the same privacy and security features already found on the iPhone and Apple Watch to prevent tampering and theft.

“Your driver’s license or state ID data is encrypted,” a statement reads on the Apple Support website. “Neither government authorities nor Apple can see when and where you use your license or ID, and biometric authentication using Face ID and Touch ID helps ensure that you can only see and use your license or ID.”

The TSA has also accepted digital IDs.

“Digital identity has the potential to strengthen airport security and improve the passenger experience by reducing touchpoints, providing greater privacy and more accurately verifying IDs,” the agency said in a statement.

My state accepts digital IDs. Do I still need my physical license at the airport?

yes The program is still in its infancy, and there is no guarantee that the checkpoint you use will be set up to accept your Apple Wallet driver’s license.

“All passengers must keep their physical driver’s license readily available,” according to the Transportation Security Administration’s website. “The TSA officer may request this physical ID in addition to the digital ID.”

Where else can I use my digital ID?

with me Introducing iOS 16 in June, apps that require age or identity verification should now accept ID cards stored in your Apple Wallet app, Apple said. Uber Eats and ride-sharing service Turo were mentioned as two apps that could offer this functionality. According to MacRumorsbut he has not officially done so.

Apple added that retailers, restaurants and other places will use the feature in the future.

Currently, police or motor vehicle departments do not accept digital IDs.

I have an Android phone. Can I upload my ID to Google Wallet?

In December 2022 system updateGoogle announced that it was in beta testing allowing Android phone users to upload their driver’s licenses to Google Wallet for “convenient, private and secure presentation.”

Google said the feature would be available in “select US states,” but didn’t specify which ones or when.

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