There’s nothing more fun on a lovely summer afternoon than a trip to the DMV, right? Right? Okay, not so much. In fact, if you’ve ever had to visit the DMV to get your license or registration renewed, you know it can be a pretty awful experience, especially early or late in the month. If you have to make a trip to the DMV anytime between the 25th of one month and the 5th or 6th of the next, you’d better plan on being there for awhile. Bringing a pillow and a snack might not be a bad idea.
If you hate going to the DMV, the government of Tennessee feels your pain (shockingly, those lines aren’t any more pleasant for the people that work at the DMV than they are for you). To try and improve the experience, they’re bringing iPads to 26 DMVs across the state. Before you get your hopes up, they’re not passing them out so you can play Angry Birds while you wait. Fun as that would be, that’s what your own smartphone or tablet (or even a newspaper, magazine, or book) is for.
No, these iPads are going to be installed as ASSETs (Automatic Self-Service Electronic Terminals, because if there’s one thing governments love, it’s a good acronym), terminals where you can conduct your business quickly and with minimal waiting or human interaction. The terminals allow drivers to perform a number of license-related operations, including renewal, replacement for a lost license, change your address, or apply to have your license reinstated. Once you’re done at the kiosk, your license should be ready in just a few minutes.
The state has installed 72 of these ASSETs in 26 driver service departments across the state. For those playing the home game, that’s three kiosks each for 20 departments, and two each for the remaining six. According to the state’s press release, the kiosks should be active now. According to the state’s list of locations (PDF), the kiosks are concentrated in Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Memphis, which account for twelve of the 26 locations. Other locations are distributed among the state’s other larger cities, including Clarksville, Murfreesboro, and others.