Thanks to the expansion of NFC payments and the amount of online shopping we all do, we don’t really need our wallets when we go out anymore. However, the driver’s license usually puts an end to that. As governments continue experimenting with the digital driver’s license, Google is apparently working on support on Android.
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As noted by XDA-Developers this week, Google is working to add an “IdentityCredential” framework to Android which would be able to securely store digital IDs, such as your driver’s license. Currently, this is available through specific applications, but that has some disadvantages, such as not working once the device is low on power.
Like these apps, Google’s new framework in Android would be able to display a digital driver’s license in full or just the portions needed for the situation – such as verified birthdates for buying tobacco or alcohol. While it’s difficult to comprehend the API as a whole, it comes down to being able to meet the needed ISO standards for securing IDs like this digitally.
Interestingly, Google’s work in APIs here may even allow the device to show your ID even if there’s not enough juice to get Android running fully. This, however, would require specialized low-power hardware and a secure chip to work. It also won’t work on current versions of Android either, XDA speculates its arrival potentially in Android R. These APIs may also support sending credentials securely over NFC.
This definitely won’t be arriving in Android Q, set for release later this year, but it’s exciting to see Google working towards a fully wallet-less future.
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