Digital IDs are on the rise in California

Onur Demirkol
Aug 21, 2023

A trial program in California that allows residents to get a mobile-compatible digital driver's license or identity card has been further expanded. The digital ID, which the California DMV refers to as a "mDL" (mobile driver's license), may be used to prove your age while purchasing alcohol or to get through airport security.

Technology is getting more common in our lives, and governments also try to keep up with some of the latest innovations. California DMV has been working on a new project that allows people to get digital driver's licenses and identification cards. Now, the program is being expanded to allow more people to get their digital identifications.

According to 9to5Mac new driver's licenses and identification cards are accessible through mobile phones, which currently play a huge role in a person's life. Mobile devices have become vital assets for many people worldwide, and apparently, the California DMV thinks that a digital identification card makes more sense than a card.

New IDs won't support Apple Wallet

When Apple Pay VP Jennifer Bailey announced support for digital IDs at WWDC in 2021, she promoted the functionality as the final step toward being "fully free of your physical wallet." Support for using your iPhone as your ID is now available in Arizona, Colorado, Maryland, and Georgia.

In January, many California citizens were excited when Newsom made his original statement that the state's digital IDs platform would link with Apple Wallet. Unfortunately, 9to5Mac says that it is not true.

Furthermore, California does not allow people to add a digital ID to the native wallets of iOS or Android; instead, you must use California's specific app. "At this time, mDL is not available for Apple or Google wallets," according to the DMV. "However, additional platforms will be made available in the future."

Robotaxis are cleared for operating in San Francisco

The California DMV reports that security checkpoints at LAX and SFO airports are able to process mobile driver's licenses. As noted on the TSA's website, a few more airports have gained support for the function in recent years.

For the time being, the trial program is restricted to 1.5 million people, so if you're interested, visit the California DMV website now to get started.


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