Back in September, it was reported that Apple is introducing the capability to add digital IDs such as state-issued identification and driver's license to its Wallet app. The feature was slated to arrive in late 2021 according to the company's website and there were also reports that taxpayers would be footing the bill for it. Now, it seems that Apple has delayed the capability to early next year.
As spotted by MacRumors, Apple has quietly updated its dedicated iOS 15 website to indicate that the ability to add a state ID or a driver's license to Apple ID has been delayed to "early 2022". No official reasoning has been provided for the delay. The time frame is a bit vague as well but at this time, it's safe to say that the feature will be rolled out in the first half of 2022. That said, it is important to note that the latest iOS 15.2 beta does not include this capability either.
Apple had previously stated that the first states to support digital IDs in Apple Wallet would be Arizona and Georgia, with Connecticut, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Utah to follow later. The company had highlighted that due to its integration, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will enable select checkpoints at airports where Apple Wallet users can verify their identity before boarding a plane.
Apple said that this gives people a more secure and convenient way to present their driver's license and state IDs to authorities. The Cupertino firm has emphasized that IDs are encrypted so they cannot be tampered with, and that Apple Wallet will communicate with identity readers using secure channels. It remains to be seen when the capability will eventually become available to Apple customers.