China’s ‘Super’ SIM cards to serve as digital ID hard wallets
“Super” SIM cards that provide hardware digital wallet functions supporting central bank digital currency transactions and digital ID have been launched in China.
The new SIM cards were unveiled by the state bank, People’s Bank of China (PBoC), for mobile phone users, Globe Echo reports.
They will support the integration of digital IDs and other credentials for authentication, and function as CBDC hard wallets. The latter feature will reportedly allow kids in middle and high school to make payments with digital yuan.
The SIM cards feature NFC antennas to enable digital ID scans. This gets around the lack of support in Apple devices for the digital renminbi, which iPhones could not use with their NFC functionality. Hard wallets also support offline transactions, whether for payments or identity verification.
Globe Echo indicates that in addition to mobile phones, the SIM cards can be physically integrated with existing ID cards to digitize their functions.
Leading national telecoms China Telecom and China Unicom have also linked Super SIM card initiatives to the PBoC’s Digital Yuan App. The reports by Globe Echo and IT-Times refer to using the hard wallet found in Super SIMs to replace physical ID cards for students and hotel check-ins.