In the next edition of Apple's iOS operating system, Apple is enticing us with the possibility of using the iPhone to turn on and off cars.
The fine print is that only one car works with this feature, new BMWs built after July 2020, so it will take a long time to become available to everyone.
But beyond cars, Apple is also looking at storing your passports and driver's IDs, sometime in the future.
"[This] allows a user to obtain a verified claim of identity that serves as a digital identity for the user, that includes information for identifying the user (e.g., information that was provided by the user and verified by one or more systems), and that can be re-used across different service providers," Apple says in the patent application.
Before you get your hopes up, Gene Munster, an investor and analyst with Loup Ventures, predicts it will take at least 5 years for this to happen. "It's the logical next step," he says. Bringing the physical wallet to digital is a "key" initiative for Apple, which has a better control of the software and hardware, because it makes both, he adds.
Android phones have software created by Google, and other manufacturers like Samsung, LG and OnePlus make the devices.
Munster says the technology is in place now for Apple to go live with the features, but that it will take 5 years to go through the regulatory and logistical hurdles and permissions.
The car on/off from an app feature in the next iOS will see sporadic usage, but will also take 5 years to go mass market.
Tesla cars can currently be turned on and off with an app.
More information: PROVIDING VERIFIED CLAIMS OF USER IDENTITY, United States Patent Application, 20200213311
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