One of the still rather exotic features of the new smartphones is a digital car key that allows you to get into the car and start the engine with just a smartphone. This, of course, requires a suitable new smartphone (such as the iPhone or Google Pixel) and a new car (for example, BMW, Kia, and Genesis are already implementing this option).
The procedure is quite simple and resembles paying for goods: you only need to approach the car and touch the desired place with a smartphone or smartwatch. The key itself is stored in the Wallet application. This is really convenient because it allows you not to carry another key in your pocket. Similarly, door locks that do not require a key have been produced for quite some time.
Now, in case you need to give access to the car to someone from relatives or friends, you can share such keys not only with iPhone users but also with owners of competing Android smartphones.
Apple is working with the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and other companies to make this possible. The first case of cross-platform key transfer was support for work with Google Pixel. At the same time, Google will add this option to users of Android 12 and newer versions of the OS. On an iPhone, this will require at least iOS 16.1.
Directly from the virtual wallet application, the key can be sent via message, mail, or even Whatsapp. For individual cases, you can use a one-time code. Moreover, if necessary, you can revoke access at any time.
Currently, the IETF is still finalizing the necessary standards and is working on them only with Apple and Google.
I wonder if car manufacturers will eventually be able to add the feature to existing models, like they did with Apple CarPlay?