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Japan pushes Apple to support digital ID card function on iPhone

Japan pushes Apple to support digital ID card function on iPhone
 

Japan wants its My Number cards on the iPhone and Tim Cook is hearing about it, according to Yahoo Japan.

In a meeting with the Apple CEO, Fumido Kishida, the Prime Minister of Japan, pushed to have his country’s digital ID card installed on the iPhone. Android should accommodate My Number by May. But the best Cook would promise Kishida was that he would work on it.

The Prime Minister’s request follows new services accessible via the 12-digit My Number digital ID card. Launched in 2016, the My Number card saw low adoption early on, in part due to limited uses for it. But Japan has made efforts to increase both the number of cards issued and the services that can be accessed with them.

The ID card can be used as both an ordinary identification piece and as a digital ID authentication credential for Japan’s digital administrative hub and app, Mynaportal. It is available for both Android and iOS (although reviews are not favorable) without financial services such as banking.

In October, Japan’s digital ministry announced it would be folding its national health insurance card program into the My Number card system by fall 2024.

In demanding that iOS include a My Number card function, Japan is putting yet another push behind its commitment to digital transformation in both the public and private sectors. It has stated a goal of having a My Number card in the hands of every Japanese citizen, from babies to the elderly, by March of 2023.

However, according to the Japan Times, as of the end of September, only 49 percent of the public had enrolled for a card, suggesting that adoption is still lagging government ambitions.

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