Cadillac rival BMW has announced a new feature that will allow customers to use their iPhone as a digital car key.
The new feature, dubbed BMW Digital Key, allows iPhone users to tap their device against their BMW’s door handle to unlock the vehicle and start it by placing it in the designated smartphone tray. The technology will first arrive on the BMW 5 Series and will eventually deploy on the rest of the BMW lineup, including high-performance ‘M’ models, crossovers, sedans, coupes and the Z4 sports car.
Users will be able to set up the BMW Digital Key feature through the existing BMW app for the iPhone. They will also be able to add up to five friends through the app that will also be able to unlock the same vehicle with their phones. A limited access feature for young drivers that enables the user to restrict top speed, horsepower, maximum radio volume and more will be available, as well. The digital key and all related information will be stored on the phone itself and not in the cloud for maximum security.
This isn’t the first time BMW has introduced new Apple technology to the automotive industry. The automaker was the first to integrate the iPod into its vehicles and was also the first to offer wireless Apple CarPlay.
While General Motors has not indicated if it will ever offer support for the iPhone digital key feature, though Apple has said that it expects more manufacturers to climb aboard in the future.