“It’s a pleasure to work with such a forward-leaning, innovative state and we look forward to continuing the development of new services for residents together.” – Donnie Scott, CEO of Identity and Security, North America, IDEMIA

IDEMIA has renewed its relationship with the California government through a 12-year contract revolving around driver’s licenses, hinting at the potential rollout of mobile driver’s licenses in the state’s future.

That technology was not explicitly named in IDEMIA’s brief announcement of the contract win, which represents the continuation of a 64-year relationship. But the company noted that its partnership with the state will extend “beyond the production of physical ID cards,” adding that mobile tablets will be used to extend DMV services to citizens in remote areas, and that “[s]everal new technologies” will be introduced, including new card design and security features.

It isn’t yet clear what these new “card design and security features” mean with respect to driver’s licenses. IDEMIA has brought innovations like dynamic CVV and embedded fingerprint sensors to payment cards, but these innovations haven’t yet been applied by the company to driver’s license concepts.

Rather, IDEMIA’s primary avenue of innovation in driver’s licenses is their virtualization. The company has been working with a number of states, including Arizona, Delaware, and Oklahoma, to develop Mobile IDs that would allow citizens to store virtual versions of their driver’s licenses on their smartphones. Mississippi became the fourth state to join IDEMIA’s Mobile ID program last autumn.

These activities have been underway as broader efforts to develop mobile ID programs have ramped up around the world, from the Czech Republic to South Korea. In the United States, meanwhile, IDEMIA’s work has been complemented by efforts from tech giant Apple to pioneer its own iPhone-focused digital wallet support for mobile driver’s licenses.

For his part, IDEMIA North America CEO Donnie Scott has been an enthusiastic proponent of digital ID technology, having discussed its emergence with FindBiometrics’ Doug OGorden at last year’s Connect:ID trade show.

Commenting in IDEMIA’s announcement of its renewed contract with California, Scott gestured to the spirit of technological innovation that has spurred so much activity in the home of Silicon Valley. “It’s a pleasure to work with such a forward-leaning, innovative state and we look forward to continuing the development of new services for residents together,” he said.