Back in February, 9to5Mac discovered within iOS 13.4 beta Apple was set to debut a ‘CarKey’ API, to allow the iPhone and Apple Watch unlock/lock and start cars.
Now, the site reports it has found evidence within iOS 14 code Apple’s first car partner with ‘CarKey’ might be BMW.
— Dongle (@DongleBookPro) March 23, 2020
“New evidence in iOS 14 code obtained by 9to5Mac reveals that Apple is working with BMW to likely be the first carmaker to support the futuristic iPhone feature. 9to5Mac received this non-denial statement from BMW when asked about their involvement,” reports Zac Hall.
Back in December, BMW announced it was set to adopt a new BMW Digital Key standard, with lead partners working together within the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC). Of course, Apple and BMW are both partners of this group, among other companies such as GM, LG, Samsung, VW and more.
BMW has also mentioned it would be leveraging ultra-wideband (UWB) for version 3.0 of the Digital Key Release specification. It’s widely known Apple’s iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro line up contains a UWB chip, so far only used to enhance AirDrop (but also rumoured for upcoming Tile tracker-like “AirTags”).
9to5Mac points out BMW was the first automaker to support wireless CarPlay and the German automaker may yet again be the first to adopt Apple’s ‘CarKey’ technology. Being able to lock/unlock and start your car with your iPhone in your pocket is technology Tesla owners have long been accustomed to.