Santa Clara University gains support for Apple Watch and iPhone contactless ID cards

Contactless ID at Santa Clara University
Contactless ID at Santa Clara University (Image credit: Santa Clara University)

What you need to know

  • Santa Clara University now supports ACCESS ID cards in the Wallet app.
  • That means people can use iPhones and Apple Watches instead of physical cards.
  • This is available to both faculty and students.

Students and faculty members at Santa Clara University can now use their Apple Watch and iPhone in lieu of their physical ACCESS ID card, it has confirmed. Users simply add their ACCESS ID card to the Wallet app on an iPhone and authenticate via an associated app.

The news was announced yesterday and spotted by 9to5Mac.

Users of the new tech will be able to check out books from the library, attend events, and more all without needing to carry their ACCESS ID card with them.

Santa Clara University students, faculty and staff can now add their ACCESS student ID card to Apple Wallet, and use their iPhone and Apple Watch to access buildings, attend athletic events, purchase meals, check out books from the library and more.

And it's all done by adding the card to the Wallet app in a similar way to setting up Apple Pay.

For a technologically savvy generation of students, setting up ACCESS student ID on iPhone and Apple Watch is easy. Students download Transact's eAccounts app, authenticate with their university credentials and then add their SCU mobile ACCESS card to their Apple Wallet.

While there are undoubtedly ease-of-use benefits here by removing the need to carry a card around, security is also improved, too. Students often lose cards, and that can lead to potential security issues. Not so with a card added to the Wallet app, and everything's backed by two-factor authentication as well.

Santa Clara's ACCESS student ID in Apple Wallet is not only convenient, it also provides an extra level of security. In the past, students would regularly return to SCU's ACCESS office to replace lost or stolen ID cards. Now, students no longer have to worry about misplacing their physical card. School credentials are also protected by two-factor authentication.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.