BMW just made it easier for customers with iPhones to lock, unlock, and drive their BMWs. At today's Apple Worldwide Developer Conference, BMW recently announced that it will become the first automaker to enable its customers to use the iPhone as a fully digital car key.
Simply dubbed 'BMW Digital Key', the upcoming feature will allow iPhone users to unlock and start their BMW without using a traditional key fob. The new digital key feature can be digitally set up through the BMW Smartphone app and can also allow the user to share access with up to 5 friends.
The system works via near-field communication (NFC). All the user has to do is to bring their iPhone near the door handle, and the iPhone will ask for authentication (via Face ID or Touch ID) before unlocking the car. Once inside, the user can place their iPhone on the smartphone tray and push the start button to start the car.
It also includes a configurable car access option where customers can set/restrict a BMW's top speed, horsepower, and maximum volume, depending on the driver using the car. Management of who can access the car can even be done through Apple Wallet which is where the BMW Digital Key is stored securely.
According to BMW, the new digital key for customers with iPhones will greatly contribute to better user experience and security. Apple and BMW have been working closely with the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC) in order to press ahead with the establishment of global standards, which includes the BMW Digital Key.
The all-new BMW Digital Key will be compatible with the following iPhone models: iPhone XR, iPhone XS or newer, and the Apple Watch Series 5 or newer. BMW Digital Key will be available in 45 countries for a broad range of models that include: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, X5, X6, X7, X5M, X6M and the Z4 (if manufactured after July 1, 2020).
With BMW pioneering the integration of the iPod in their vehicles and the first to offer wireless Apple CarPlay, the introduction of the BMW Digital Key is the brand's commitment to further advancing wireless technology and better ease of use for its customers. The only question now is, will BMW Digital Key be offered in the Philippines soon?