Your iPhone will be your ‘Car Key’ in iOS 14: Here’s how this Apple feature works

We have heard about this tech in the past as a rumour or a speculation but it was only during WWDC 2020 that the firm officially unveiled it.

Apple Car Key
Apple Car Key (Apple)

There were several announcements made by Apple during WWDC 2020 conference, with iOS 14 being one of the important ones. This new software will be coming to iPhone SE (1st gen) and later models with new features and several upgrades. However, one of the rumoured features that will also be coming as a part of iOS 14 is Apple Car Key. We have heard about this tech in the past as a rumour or a speculation but it was only yesterday that the firm officially unveiled it.

Also read: Why WWDC 2020 was ‘historic’ for Apple MacBooks, iMacs

So what is Apple Car Key?

As explained by Apple, the new Car Key feature is an attempt by the firm to make locking/unlocking and starting your car easily using your iPhone as the key. This will eliminate the use of real car keys. For now, the feature uses the NFC chip in your iPhone and the car to connect and unlock it. You have to connect the NFC-enabled car with this feature in your iPhones. So, the next time when a user comes in proximity to the NFC placement in the car, for instance door handles, the car will automatically unlock for the user.


Apple Car Key feature
Apple Car Key feature (Apple)

It has been confirmed that this feature will be coming to the 2021 BMW 5 series, which will be out next month. That said, Apple will be working on an industry-wide standard as well that will let it use the iPhone’s U1 chipset for Car Key instead of NFC.

Also read: Apple WWDC 2020: The 14 important things that were announced

What’s interesting is that Car Key stays as a card in your Wallet app and can be shared with others over Messages. This will let the other person unlock the car and drive, without meeting the owner or having physical keys. It is also possible for the owner to restrict the driver’s profile remotely. “Digital car keys give users a secure way to use iPhone or Apple Watch to unlock and start their car. Digital car keys can be easily shared using Messages, or disabled through iCloud if a device is lost, and are available starting this year through NFC,” states Apple Newsroom.

Lastly, the Car Key feature works with Apple Watch as well and can stay active for up to five hours even after the connected iPhone’s battery runs out.