Hyundai Motor Group has announced a Smartphone based Digital Key, allowing users to unlock and start Hyundai cars, and to perform may other functions, via their phone. This new Digital Key will take the place of a physical key and can be downloaded via an App.
The Digital Key can be used by upto 4 persons and the working is similar to that offered by a physical key. The new Digital Key uses Near Field Communication (NFC) along with Bluetooth Low Energy.
The door handles of the car is fitted with an NFC antenna and the vehicle unlocks when it detects that the digital key enabled smartphone is in close proximity. There is a safety feature that allows the wireless data communication to be activated only when the smartphone device and the reader are just a few centimeters apart.
The engine can be started once the driver places the smartphone in the wireless pad and uses the start/stop button. This is permitted only for four users with all other vital information such as mirror position, seat position and steering wheel alignment along with settings for head up display and infotainment system being stored. The system immediately adjusts to each driver when detected. For remote access, the Bluetooth Low Energy system comes into play while for any other handing which is not possible via the digital key, Hyundai also offers the traditional smart key and card type keys.
The use of Digital Key will be specially useful in terms of rental of the vehicle. It will allow users to pre decide duration of the vehicle use and also to limit use of only specific features when the vehicle has been rented. In the future, Hyundai also promises that the Digital Key will be able to limit speed and will trigger off an alarm when the speed goes above a specific limit or travels outside of a designated area. In the case of rentals, the owner and driver will also not have to meet but the owner will be able to transfer the Digital Key via the cell phone app. This advanced system will be introduced on new Hyundai and Kia cars later this year.
“The Digital Key will benefit a very wide range of future Hyundai customers, as well as enabling innovative new schemes for vehicle sharing. We are studying other ways to harness this type of connected-car technology to greatly enhance the driving and ownership experience.” said Ho Yoo, Group Leader of Hyundai Motor Group’s Electronics Development Group.