Apple Executive Explains WatchOS 8 Features: IDs and Car Keys

WatchOS 8

Apple Watch Product Marketing Director Deidre Caldbeck and Apple’s Vice President of Technology Kevin Lynch just had a conversation with the media about the new digital wallet features introduced in the company’s upcoming watchOS 8 software update. During the conversation, the two executives detailed how Apple Watch can use the new features in watchOS 8 to replace traditional wallets and physical car keys.

Caldbeck bluntly stated that their ultimate goal is to realize the vision of eventually replacing physical wallets so that everyone can complete all operations on the wrist. However, this ambitious plan also needs to be implemented in stages.

At the WWDC 2021 conference in early June, Apple introduced for the first time how watchOS 8 will support electronic ID cards and driver’s licenses. Its working method is similar to that of Apple Pay, and users can perform corresponding management on the App side.

Of course, the final implementation depends on the different regulations on digital ID documents in various states in the United States, and this technology will definitely take a long time to promote before it can be promoted in more places around the world.

Next, Lynch explained how to use an Apple Watch running watchOS 8 to lock, unlock, and even start a paired car: “You will be able to walk to the car and unlock it naturally. This idea is very interesting.”

Currently, watchOS 8 is still in the Beta testing stage and is expected to be officially released later this year. However, this feature still depends on which models support NFC and ultra-wideband (UWB) connection technology, and users need to wear the latest Apple Watch. Old models before Series 6 do not support this feature.