NI 52 - Smartphone Driving Licences by 2018?

Post date: 05-Apr-2017 10:00:26

Fumbling under the dashboard to find your driving license will soon be a thing of the past.

By next year motorists will be able to store digital licenses on their smartphones.

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) will test the system this September and roll it out in spring 2018.

Chief Executive Oliver Morley insists it will be 'quick, easy and secure' to prevent forgeries but plastic licenses will still be available. He wants the free digital service to allow people to share and validate information with 'trusted' third parties such as employers and insurers.

Mr Morley tweeted a photo of a prototype for a digital licence which showed an iPhone screen displaying the image of a licence in the Apple Pay app.

smartphone trial driving licence being developed

It comes as The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) plans to modernise driving tests to prepare for driverless cars. The tests could involve virtual reality but a spokesman refused to go into further detail. He said: 'We will also make sure we explore the opportunities for further developing driver training and testing in line with relevant technologies - for example, virtual reality.'

Virtual reality is already being used to aid drivers. Motorists can take a test on their phones that's designed to reveal how distracted they are by roadside hazards, annoying passengers and text messages while driving.

The DVSA also said that MOT tests will have to adapt for modern technology and take into account sensors, cameras and other instruments used by driverless and semi-autonomous cars.

It is thought that we could see driverless cars in Britain in four years as Business Secretary Greg Clark aims to make Britain a world-leading hub for the technology.

He has pledged £100million of government funding to a project to build them along the M40 corridor between London and Birmingham.

He said the industry would be worth £63 billion by 2035, adding: 'Our collaboration with industry will create a cluster of excellence that will ensure we are perfectly positioned to lead.'

Further details on the timetable for the digital license service have been included in the DVLA's business plan for the next 12 months.

It states: 'During 2017/18 we will be developing a quick, easy and secure service to allow customers to view a representation of their driving licence on their smartphone.

'The driver will be in control of their data and this can be used to share and validate driver information with trusted third parties through a secure website.

'This service will not replace the full driving licence.

'The digital licence service will only be available to driving licence holders who have authenticated themselves on through the existing driving licence service.

'This service will be available 24/7, wherever the driver has a web connection.

'We will develop a private beta service by September 2017.'

DVLA said work is in the early stages, with further details on what the service will look like to be released in future.

Source & credit: Daily Mail

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