Unlock the BMW iX Like a High-Tech Boss With the Upgraded Apple Digital Key

BMW iX should be a monument to technology 1 photo
Photo: BMW
Far beyond giving us the means to contact anyone, anywhere, anytime, smartphones have opened the doors to a whole lot of things to be achieved a lot easier. How many of you, for instance, don’t already use phones as you once did credit cards, paying stuff through that magical something called Near-Field-Communication (NFC)?
NFC has also enabled smartphones to be used as car keys. True, at the moment, there is a small number of cars that can be accessed this way, a good chunk of them part of this or that car-sharing fleet. Well, the tech is coming to us average Joes to use in our personal cars, and it’s coming fast.

In the summer of last year, BMW announced it would become “the first carmaker to enable its customers to use iPhone as a fully digital car key.“ That means any one of us who owns a new BMW will be able to use the iPhone to unlock the car and even fire it up as soon as the gadget is placed in its proper place.

At the time, the Bavarians let us know that pretty much the entire range of models they currently make and sell (assembled after July 1, 2020), from the 1 Series to the Z4, can benefit from this. And now comes news of the upcoming electric iX going down the same path, and with a twist that makes NFC look old.

More precisely, the iX will be unlocked and started while the iPhone is still in your pocket or bag, thanks to a new technology called Ultra-Wideband (UWB). It should be better and safer than before, being capable of preventing relay attacks (interception or jamming of the signal).

If all goes well, we’re likely to see this expanding even further, even to other makes, as BMW says it, together with Apple, are now “providing a global standard for the automotive industry.”
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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