Previously, the convenience feature was only offered to customers with Apple devices.
BMW has announced that its Digital Key Plus technology is now available for Android smartphones. This means that BMW drivers with a Samsung or Google device can now lock and unlock the vehicle (and even start the engine) without touching their phones.
The Digital Key Plus service was first introduced in 2021 but was only available on Apple devices. BMW says the feature is offered to customers with a Samsung Galaxy S23+ (or Ultra) and Google Pixel 7 Pro smartphones. The automaker says older models with Android 13.1 or later are also compatible.
You walk up to the vehicle, and the car reacts like it would when approached with a traditional key fob. The animated front and rear lights greet the driver, the doors unlock, leaving the owner to start the engine.
The Digital Key Plus uses ultra-wideband (UWB) technology, which provides the best possible security. BMW claims the precision of the UWB digital radio technology prevents the radio signal from being jammed or intercepted, keeping your BMW iX or 7 Series safe from car thieves.
The Android-compatible Digital Key Plus is only available on vehicles produced after November 2022. BMW will eventually roll out a software update to expand the service to cars built before then. BMW says it worked with Google to develop the Android specification and, according to the automaker, "established it as a global standard for the automotive industry via the Car Connectivity Consortium."
Since the advent of Digital Key Plus, BMW has worked tirelessly to improve its convenience features, providing its customers with even more luxury and comfort.
Earlier this year, the manufacturer upgraded the Digital Key Plus platform by enabling the digital key to be shared between Apple and Android devices. Previously, the key could only be shared via Apple's iMessage application. Since January 2023, the Digital Key can now be shared via e-mail, regular text message, or even WhatsApp. Users don't even need to have a BMW ID or download a specific app; a simple link will let you access the vehicle.
This is a boon for families that share the same car. Instead of forcing a group to use the same smartphone brand, the key can be easily transferred via message (regardless of the device). Five users can use just one digital key, making things much easier for those involved.
This setup helps parents keep their kids safe, as owners can limit the top speed, radio volume, and even available engine power - no longer can your offspring take a joyride in your prized German chariot.
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