According to an article on Apple’s Newsroom webpage, tens of thousands of students will be able to use mobile student IDs on iPhone and Apple Watch to get around campus and make purchases this school year.
For the first time, mobile student IDs can be added to the Wallet app in Canada, starting with the University of New Brunswick and Sheridan College this year. In the U.S., new schools to adopt mobile student IDs include Auburn University, Northern Arizona University, University of Maine, New Mexico State University, and many more colleges across the country.
“We’re excited to work with more schools in the US and introduce mobile student IDs in Canada to provide a secure and convenient way to get around campus with iPhone and Apple Watch,” said Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay, in the article. “Students and faculty have embraced using their iPhone and Apple Watch as the best way to access buildings, purchase meals, and more.”
Many universities are increasingly moving away from plastic cards and taking a mobile-first approach to their student ID programs, allowing students to use mobile student IDs in Wallet to complete any action that would have previously required a plastic ID card — both on and off campus.
In April 2021, for the first time since launching mobile student IDs in Wallet, students used their mobile IDs to make purchases and access campus buildings more than they used plastic ID cards, according to Apple. This fall, the University of Alabama will be the first school to exclusively issue mobile student IDs to their 38,000 students with eligible devices.
“The response from our campus community for the mobile ID has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Jeanine Brooks, the University of Alabama’s Action Card director. “Going contactless over the last year was an easy transition for us because of it. Using their UA ACT Card in Wallet has saved students — and the university — time and money. They use it to access their residence halls, recreation centers, student events, libraries, vending machines, and so much more. Students don’t lose their cards, so card theft and replacement are no longer concerns or costs. Our students are thrilled with this feature.”
“UNB is a leader in deploying technology that is convenient and easy to use,” said Terry Nikkel, University of New Brunswick’s chief information officer and associate vice president of Information Technology Services. “Our students with iPhone and Apple Watch are really going to like our mobile ID card for its flexibility and usefulness, and we are pleased to be the first university in Canada to offer this service.”
Apple says that mobile student IDs on iPhone and Apple Watch offer students and schools an extra level of security and privacy, as students don’t need to worry about misplacing their plastic card. Also, transaction history is never shared with Apple or stored on Apple servers. If a student misplaces their iPhone or Apple Watch, they can use the Find My app to immediately lock their device and help locate it.
To enable student IDs on Wallet, Apple works with companies that specialize in campus credentials and mobile access, including Transact, CBORD, TouchNet, Atrium, HID Global, and Allegion.