android digital car key

Now you can use your Android phone as a car key

Android is becoming even more helpful with new features that make it a joy to create, capture, relive, and share holiday memories — all while strengthening security and personalization. Let’s take a look at what’s new. android digital car key

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Let’s start with the digital car key functionality. This is now live on the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, as well as the Samsung Galaxy S21, in select countries.

BMW is the first vehicle manufacturer to add support for the feature, enabling owners to unlock their vehicle by holding their smartphone next to the door handle and start the engine by placing their phone in the wireless charging compartment.

“To ensure maximum ease and security, the BMW Digital Key is stored on the secure element of the smartphone,” BMW says.

Gif of a phone with the lock screen displayed being placed near a car handle to unlock it.

“It can be easily configured via My BMW app and is then available as an option for almost all BMW models. In the next release, it will be possible to pass the key on to five friends.

“The functionalities of the BMW Digital Key Plus based on ultra wideband (UWB) will also be introduced for Android smartphones in a future release.”

At launch, BMW Digital Keys are available for users of compatible Android smartphones in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, UK, USA, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and Canada.

Google announced that it was adding support for both NFC and UWB digital keys with its Android 12 update and was working with “BMW and others to bring this to their upcoming cars” in May, while Samsung revealed that its Galaxy 21 series smartphones would support digital car keys in January.

BMW launched its NFC Digital Key option for iPhone and Smartwatch users with its 2021 BMW 5 series and added support for UWB for Apple users in January.

Next news, Android Auto can be set to launch automatically when you connect your Android phone to your compatible car, and like us you’re probably wondering why this wasn’t a feature already. Once you’re on the road, you’ll have access to smart replies “soon”, so you can respond to a text more easily with the Google Assistant. Also “coming soon”, the ability to use your voice to search for music faster in your media apps. android digital car key

Gif of a car infotainment system displaying and reading out an incoming message from Dad, “Have you left already? Can’t wait to see you.” Options to respond with “on my way”, “no” and “me too!” pop up at the bottom of the screen. “On my way” is selected and sent.

Widgets are being added to three Google apps. 
The new Google Photos People Pets widget lets you select few faces and an appropriate frame, and then the  widget will decorate your Home screen with your nearest and dearest. The new YouTube Music widget puts playbackcontrols and recently played tracks on your Home screen, and the new Google Photos People Pets widget lets you  select few faces and an appropriate frame, and the widget will decorate your Home screen with your nearest and  dearest.


Gboard also has additional Emoji Kitchen combinations, including the wrapped gift box emoji and an all-new array of animal companions. 


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Driven by wanderlust and a passion for tech, Sandra is the creative force behind Alertify. Love for exploration and discovery is what sparked the idea for Alertify, a product that likely combines Sandra’s technological expertise with the desire to simplify or enhance travel experiences in some way.