Volvo Cars’ digital key
- App on a mobile phone replaces the metal tumbler system
- Sharing a car will become both simple and convenient.
- Volvo owners will be able to send their digital key to other people via their mobile phones to use the car.
- This may be to family members, friends or co-workers in a company.
- Physical keys will continue to be offered for people who want them.
CAR keys. They’re essential – vital – and cause immense stress and mobility problems when you lose them.
They are central to vehicle security – but used for theft in the wrong hands.
But now, after the best part of a century when drivers have been accustomed to accessing and driving cars with physical keys, Volvo unlocks secrets of a keyless world including car sharing in a ground-breaking move for the automotive industry.
It plans to become the world’s first car manufacturer to offer cars without keys from 2017.
Volvo customers will be offered an application for their mobile phones to replace the physical key with a digital key. The innovative Bluetooth-enabled digital key technology will offer Volvo customers far more flexibility, enabling them to benefit from entirely new ways to use and share cars.
The new Volvo app enables the digital key on the customer’s mobile phone to do everything a physical key currently does, such as locking or unlocking the doors or the boot and allowing the engine to be started. See how it work here:
This new technology will also offer customers the possibility to receive more than one digital key on their app, allowing them to access different Volvo cars in different locations – according to their changing mobility needs.
Using the app, people could potentially book and pay for a rental car anywhere in the world and have the digital car key delivered to their phone immediately. On arrival, a customer could simply locate the rental car via GPS, unlock it and drive away, avoiding those frustrating queues at airport or train station car rental desks.
Volvo Cars’ digital key means that sharing a car will become both simple and convenient. Volvo owners will be able to send their digital key to other people via their mobile phones so they can also use the car. This may be to family members, friends or co-workers in a company.
Henrik Green, Volvo Cars’ vice president of product strategy & vehicle line management, said: “At Volvo, we are not interested in technology for the sake of technology. New technology has to make our customers’ lives easier and save them time.
Volvo is a pioneer with new digital key solutions. In 2015, the Swedish premium car maker launched the world’s first commercial offer to have online shopping delivered directly to the car by providing a one-time digital key to a delivery company. Now the digital key technology will also be made available for customers.
“Mobility needs are evolving and so are our customers’ expectation to access cars in an uncomplicated way.
“Our innovative digital key technology has the potential to completely change how a Volvo can be accessed and shared. Instead of sitting idle in a parking lot the entire day, cars could be used more often and efficiently by whoever the owner wishes.”
Volvo will pilot this technology this spring, 2016, via its car-sharing firm Sunfleet, stationed at Gothenburg airport, Sweden. A limited number of commercially available cars will be equipped with the new digital key technology in 2017.
“There are obviously many permutations when it comes to how this shared key technology can be used,” added Martin Rosenqvist, Volvo’s new car director, special products. “We look forward to seeing how else this technology might be used in the future and we welcome any and all ideas.”