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Mercer U Adds ID Cards to iPhones, Apple Watches

college student using smart phone

Students at Georgia's Mercer University can now use their iPhones or Apple Watches to access buildings and facilities, buy food, register for events and handle other ID card tasks. The institution recently enabled functionality that would allow community members to add their "Bear Cards" to Apple Wallet, turning their devices into "contactless" student IDs.

Aside from the convenience factor, contactless student IDs can bolster security, according to the institution. Credentials are protected by multi-factor authentication and can be remotely deactivated by the student or university.

The building access is made possible through the use of Allegion Schlage electronic locks (specifically, the AD-300 and AD-400 models), which feature built-in credential readers and access control sensors.

Also required was campus transaction software from Transact. This firm, previously a division of Blackboard and now an independent company, produces campus card systems and services.

"We've seen the shift where people are becoming less dependent on cards and more dependent on their mobile phones, and it's no surprise that college students are embracing this change," noted Jeff Koziol, Allegion business development manager, in a statement.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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