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Coming Soon To Iowa: Driver's License On A Smartphone App

A smartphone app will soon serve as an official driver's license for many Iowans.

"We are really moving forward on this," Paul Trombino, director of the state's Department of Transportation, told Gov. Terry Brandstad during an agency budget hearing this week. "The way things are going, we may be the first in the nation."

His comments were reported by The Des Moines Register.

The new license will be accepted by police during traffic stops as well as at the state's airports.

"It is basically your license on your phone," he said, according to the newspaper.

A PIN will be used for verification, making it secure.

The newspaper adds:

"Iowa is already one of more than 30 states that allow motorists to show electronic proof of insurance during a traffic stop. Rather than digging through clutter in your glove compartment for an insurance card, you can simply hand the law enforcement officer your mobile phone."

Iowans will still have the option of keeping their traditional licenses. The new app license will be available in 2015 at no additional cost to drivers.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Krishnadev Calamur
Krishnadev Calamur is NPR's deputy Washington editor. In this role, he helps oversee planning of the Washington desk's news coverage. He also edits NPR's Supreme Court coverage. Previously, Calamur was an editor and staff writer at The Atlantic. This is his second stint at NPR, having previously worked on NPR's website from 2008-15. Calamur received an M.A. in journalism from the University of Missouri.