It’s been about two months since we heard that Apple started to test a new app that can unlock cars. A new leak shows that they are almost ready to release the app. The app was found in the code of iOS 14. According to that code, Apple has entered a partnership with BMW in order to implement the CarKey app on their latest car models.
The partnership with BMW
The BMW Group was interested in the integration of smart devices and the customers’ digital ecosystem since its early stages. They wanted to provide their customers with simple, connected, and “keyless” access to their cars. Right now, it is possible to lock and unlock the vehicle, or start the engine, or even share the key with others, by using the BMW Digital Key, as part of BMW Connected on the smartphone.
Another thing to keep in mind is that BMW confirmed that the Car Connectivity Consortium would standardize the Digital Key feature between cars and connected devices. But we already knew this, since Apple announced it in 2018.
The CCC charter member companies include Apple, followed by BMW, Audi, General Motors, HYUNDAI, LG Electronics, Panasonic, Samsung, and more.
With regards to the Ultra-Wide Band Technology
BMW is going to use ultra-wideband technology to come with anti-theft protection and GPS localization. The Digital Key specification will be improved by the ultra-wideband (UWB)-based release 3.0. This means that the technology will come with maximum anti-theft protection and will also enable precise localization. The mobile phone will no longer be held directly up to the door handle in order to unlock the car. Users would be able to unlock the car with their phones left in the pocket.