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The Worldwide Developers Conference is what Apple used to announce the launch of its new operating system iOS 14. Why are we talking about that on an automotive platform, you ask? Because it features a revolutionary ‘digital key’ function that allows owners an easy and secure way to access and start a compatible vehicle.
When the digital key is launched later this year (which will first be showcased on BMW vehicles), it will use near-field communication (NFC) technology so that users can ‘tap’ their phone near the door handles to unlock the car. Once inside, they can then place their iPhone into the smartphone tray and start the engine.
Since drivers no longer need to have a physical key, it allows owners to easily share their car with friends and family. BMW says up to five people can be granted access and the owner will be able to restrict horsepower, top speed, and maximum radio volume for each user, amongst a host of other settings. BMW will offer a wide range of support as “1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, X5, X6, X7, X5M, X6M and Z4” models manufactured after July 1st, 2020 will support the digital key in 45 countries.