Do You Trust an App That's Basically A Virtual Car Key?

There's a smartphone app for ordering food through a ride-sharing service, so why not make one that turns you phone into a virtual car key? Seems airtight, you guys.

Automakers are constantly finding new ways to integrate more user-friendly tech into their new models. From augmented reality to offering a new Cadillac like a ride-sharing platform, car companies are looking to see how everything can be turned into an app-based, or phone-based, highlight. Now, the latest piece of the auto world to get the digital fix is your own car key set. A new smartphone app development essentially turns your phone into your keys or virtual car key (VCK).

The technology is in development right now and already there are carmakers integrating smartphones into their vehicles' infotainment systems. Autotrader highlighted that companies like Nissan and BMW are finding ways to implement this virtual car key technology into their cars, getting ahead of the curve of the future of smartphone-based cars.

Unlocking the Future

This tech is part of the future of auto tech that bases all of our auto uses on smartphones. One day soon a virtual car key like this on your phone may be all you need to operate a vehicle. Mercedes' Mercedes Me feature and BMW's Digital Key are just a couple of examples of VCK technology already in use. Virtual car key is also seen as a great asset for commercial trucking due to its ability to track and store massive amounts of data and numbers of keys.

When it comes to businesses with a fleet of vehicles, like a trucking company or delivery service, a virtual car key makes a ton of sense. What's more, rental car companies (remember those?) are getting in on the action as Avis is beta testing the functionality of VCK tech in 5,000 Kansas City-based cars.

Lock It Up

Security is a main concern for those cautious to jump in the pool with virtual car key technology. That much makes sense. Depending on smartphones to operate a vehicle or a whole fleet of trucks can be risky, but the argument is that it's the same as misplacing a set of keys or key fob. It comes down to a matter of encryption. A fob or key set may be lost forever or stolen for good, but a smartphone has an added layer of security with safeguarding against illegal access.

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