The technology NFC it was implemented on the iPhone due to Apple Pay and, since then, little has been explored for other resources – Apple’s fault, of course, that it does not open this technology so that everyone can use it in the way that suits them. There was a rumor that this would change with the arrival of iOS 12, but little has been changed in this scenario. Now, something will happen.
According to the NFC World, Apple will expand the readability of iPhones’ NFC chip by the end of the year. The reason? So that the smartphone can be used to read data stored on passport and / or identity security chips.
Such a statement was made by the UK Ministry of the Interior, which has been talking to Apple to expand the use of NFC on iPhones precisely so that an app developed by the government can read the passport / identity information of European Union citizens who want to apply to continue to reside in the UK.
Currently, the NFC functionality of the iPhone is quite restricted, allowing only the reading of NDEF data (NFC Data Exchange Format, or NFC Data Exchange Format). Because of this obstacle (passport chips do not store information in this format), the British government is unable to make the app available EU Exit: ID Document Check for iPhones, only for devices running the Android operating system.
In an ideal world, a European citizen who wants to continue living in the UK would download the app, fill out a short form, take out a selfie for facial recognition and would touch the iPhone on the passport / identity chip so that the document information could be properly collected. Today, however, this flow can only be done on Android devices.
The good news, as we said, is that Apple will expand NFC capabilities, as stated by Sajid Javid (Secretary of State for Internal Affairs): “[…] I am pleased to confirm that Apple will make the identity document verification application available on its devices by the end of the year. ”
Taking into account that more than 280 thousand European citizens applied to continue living in the United Kingdom, this measure could make life easier for many people if Apple really collaborates and expands the NFC update – we will also see if this expansion of the feature does not benefit other applications .
It is worth noting that this register will continue regardless of the outcome of the negotiations for the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union (Brexit) – the enrollment program will remain open until June 2021, in the case of an agreement or December 2020, in the case of no agreement.
Obviously, the EU Exit app: ID Document Check is not the only option for this application to be made: there are more than 50 places where candidates can have their passports checked, in addition to the fact that the entire process can also be done by the postal service.