09 December, 2014
As the end of 2014 quickly approaches, tis the season for New Year’s predictions and speculation. With one of the first entries for 2015, campus card business consultant Robert Huber peers into his crystal ball to predict what 2015 will hold for the campus card.
In a blog post on his website, Huber’s first prediction is that smart phones will likely usher in a new era of campus credentials. As Huber sees it, Apple’s iPhone 6 will lead the charge.
Huber suggests that the transition is already in progress with some community college administrators having already discontinued issuing plastic ID cards and parking passes as a means to cut costs for their institutions.
“We expect 50-100 higher education institutions to commence registration and acceptance of smartphones as virtual campus card credentials by fall 2015 – with acceptance by 50% of all educational institutions by the end of the decade,” says Huber.
Huber predicts that mobile devices will affect physical security as well, influencing everything from door access to operational costs.
The increased presence of smart phones, contactless and wireless technologies will create the need for a centralized security system control, and a transition to a keyless campus. The introduction of these technologies, as Huber sees it, will provide the catalyst for enterprise door access conversions at a number of universities by the end of the decade.
To accompany a flood of mobile credentials in the campus space, Huber also predicts that hosted, cloud-based card systems will become commonplace.
Huber explains that, in recent years, there has been a significant desire from college IT directors to move campus enterprise systems to a hosted, off-site model. This shift has thus far been born out of a desire for greater security, data protection, system management expertise and reduced long-term on-site operations expenses.
“We expect all campus card vendors to provide cloud-based systems within two years and 25% of all installed Campus Card Systems to be cloud-based by the end of the decade,” says Huber.
Huber believes that card services as a whole will move to the cloud, while Blackboard’s recent acquisition of CardSmith shows intent to expand card system options.
Additionally, he believes that cloud-based offerings will pave the way for campus card systems to market their services more effectively. With the increase in mobile credentials on smart phones will come the ability for campus card users – students or otherwise – to receive virtual merchant coupons and incentives.
Visit AllCampusCard.com for Huber’s full list of 2015 campus card predictions.