NSW digital driver's licence demand is triple first-year estimates

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NSW digital driver's licence demand is triple first-year estimates

Hits two million downloads.

More than two million NSW motorists downloaded a digital driver’s licence (DDL) in the first 12 months – three times the state government’s initial estimate.

Prior to its launch in late October 2019, Service NSW had projected that only around 12 percent of motorists would take-up the electronic vehicle licence in the first year.

The estimate – the equivalent of just under 745,000 motorists – was based on the success of a series of trials conducted in metropolitan and rural and regional NSW.

But over the weekend, Customer Service Minister Victor Dominello said the opt-in DDL had achieve a significant milestone, surpassing two million downloads.

“Two million people (36 percent of all driver's licence holders) can’t be wrong,” he said in a statement.

“Drivers simply love the technology, with 95 percent giving it the thumbs up.”

The DDL has been an accepted form of ID for police checks and to gain entry to licenced venues since it was launched, but as of September can be used for “any legal requirement”.

It follows the passage of legislation that gives the DDL equal standing with physical licences, meaning that it is now accepted by police in every state and territory.

The laws also mean it is now technically possible to open a bank account or hire a car with a DDL, though the government is struggling to find a solution for identity proofing purposes.

Take-up of the DDL has been aided by the COVID Safe check-in tool, which allows customer to sign into hospitality venues and other businesses using Service NSW’s app.

The in-app contact tracing tool allows business to avoid third-party QR code sign-in options, which privacy advocates have raised concerns about in recent weeks.

Dominello said the DDL had been used to sign into venues more than 562,000 times since the tool went live in September.

The government will also use the DDL to deliver its ‘dine and discover’ program, which could see the number of downloads increase further.

The program will provide each adult with $25 in vouchers to spend at businesses from late January 2021.

“To download a DDL you need to create a MyServiceNSW Account, which is also a requirement for dine and discover,” Dominello said.

“So the sooner you create an account, the sooner you can reap the rewards.”

NSW and South Australia remain the only two jurisdictions to have introduced a digital driver’s licence, though Queensland is currently trialling a Thales-built solution.

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