BMW Digital Key Plus: Open car with iPhone still in bag or pocket

By CARSIFU | 14 January 2021

MUNICH: BMW is pressing ahead with the development and popularisation of its BMW Digital Key feature, which is available to iPhone users today.

It has refined the technology further and is now introducing the BMW Digital Key Plus, said to be a convenient and secure way to unlock and start your car without taking your iPhone out of your bag or pocket.

This latest incarnation of the service is based on Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technology, the technology found on the U1 chip of iPhone. The BMW Digital Key Plus feature would be available first in the all-electric iX for iPhone.

Ultra-Wideband technology is a short-range, high-bandwidth digital radio technology that is known to have precise localisation with the greatest possible security. UWB’s precision also ensures that relay attacks, where the radio signal is jammed or intercepted, are not possible.

Apple and BMW have been working closely with the Car Connectivity Consortium to establish the Digital Key specification 3.0 for UWB, providing a global standard for the automotive industry.

BMW is one of the pioneers in the use of a smartphone as a digital vehicle key since 2018.