BMW will be the first car manufacturer to allow its customers to use the iPhone as a digital key, thus allowing them to use their smartphone to lock and unlock the vehicle, trigger the ignition and share access to the model with up to five people via iMessage.
The announcement was made at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), Apple’s conference dedicated to developers who essentially develop software dedicated to the brand’s products. It was at this event, held in Cupertino, California (United States of America), that the German manufacturer reported that the next digital key for iPhone will be available in 45 countries, in virtually all Series (from 1 to 8, except 7), in the X5, X6, X7, X5M, X6M and also in the Z4, since manufactured from the next day 1 July. These models will be compatible with iPhone XR, iPhone XS, or newer, in addition to apple watch series 5 or newer.
The digital key, “safely stored in Apple Wallet”, is configurable in the BMW Smartphone app, and even if your iPhone turns off due to lack of battery, the key remains functional for five hours thanks to a power reserve. As for the sharing of the vehicle, the owner can define up to five users and establish specific conditions for each of them, from speed limits to maximum radio volume.
Another of the novelties of this WWDC is that the future electric vehicles of BMW, starting with the i4 (scheduled for 2021), will enjoy “smart routes” if they resort to Apple CarPlay. Simply enter the destination so that Apple Maps chooses which route is most appropriate to follow the journey, taking into account the battery charge and charging stations available along the route.