Mar 30, 2022 - News

Apple says digital driver's licenses coming to Ohio "soon"

Illustration of a driver's license in the shape of a text message balloon.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

In the not-so-distant future, Ohioans may be able to substitute their physical driver's licenses in favor of digital IDs stored on their iPhones.

Why it matters: We already use phones for payments and other essential services, but this would finally allow an electronic option for government-issued IDs.

Driving the news: Apple rolled out a program last week in Arizona to allow residents to scan their IDs and send the image to the state motor vehicle department for approval, Axios' Ina Fried reports.

Yes, but: Don't go throwing away your physical ID cards just yet. At this point, the program looks to be limited for use at Transportation Security Administration checkpoints.

State of play: It's unclear just when this program might be introduced to Ohio airports and beyond.

  • We asked the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles and TSA for more details, but both agencies passed us off to Apple.
  • An Apple spokesperson did not respond to an inquiry about the program.

The big picture: Once implemented, this would mark another effort by the BMV and John Glenn International Airport to modernize in recent years.

  • The state revamped its BMV website last year, which now features online driver's license renewals and a virtual check-in system to prevent long in-person waits.

Meanwhile, the airport introduced a new security service last December that allows flyers to employ facial recognition technology in lieu of physical IDs.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Columbus.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Columbus stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Columbus.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more