Android 12 will let you unlock your car from your phone
Android is the world’s largest and most-used smartphone operating system and now powers more than three billion active devices. Besides smartphones and tablets, Google products such as Android Auto also run on millions of cars. In fact, at Google I/O 2021, Google confirmed this number stands at 100 million with a number of automakers such as Ford, GM, Honda, and many more now integrating wireless Android Auto in their vehicles. In the near future, Google plans to extend the use of Android in the car, and one of the most deserving applications comes to life with Android 12. Google announced that it is partnering with several smartphone companies to establish an industry-wide standard that will help you unlock your car using your phone.
One of the ways the car key feature in Android works is through NFC, and you can simply tap your smartphone on the car’s door to unlock it. For phones that UWB, like the Samsung Galaxy S21 series, you will be able to unlock the car without taking your phone out of your pocket. The feature will also allow users to share these virtual car keys with friends and family members when they borrow the vehicle.
Google says the feature is coming to select Pixel and Samsung Galaxy smartphones later this year. The feature is initially coming to BMW cars but we can expect other manufacturers to adopt the feature.
Earlier this year at the Galaxy S21 launch event, Samsung announced a similar functionality. The company then said it is partnering with car companies including Audi, BMW, Ford, and Genesis to bring keyless entry using smartphones. At the time, Samsung did not share details about the working of the technology but shared the tentative launch timeline of August 2021.
Notably, Samsung is a member of key bodies such as the Car Connectivity Consortium and the FiRa Consortium, which also have Apple as a member. So we can expect this feature to not be limited to Android 12 or later versions, per se. We hope to learn more about it in the future.
Follow us for more Google I/O news!