Hyundai and its Genesis brand are reportedly close to adding support for Apple's digital car key feature, which lets you unlock and launch compatible vehicles using the iPhone's Wallet app, according to Bloombergs Mark Gurman. According to Gurman, the so-called "CarKey" feature is set to come to Hyundai's Genesis lineup this summer.
Hyundai already offers proprietary iOS apps, including MyHyundai with Bluelink and Genesis Intelligent Assistant, which include the ability to remotely launch or unlock compatible vehicles. But adding support for Apple's implementation of the digital key feature should make the functionality more hassle-free and take advantage of Apple Wallet system-level shortcuts. Hyundai's website notes that its NFC-based digital key feature is currently only available on Android phones.
Apple first announced its digital car key feature in 2020, but so far it is only available on select BMW models. Reports that it would come to Hyundai's cars go back to at least January 2021, where Business Korea reported on the plans, and references to Hyundai's Genesis cars have also been discovered in the iOS 15 code.
BloombergThe report does not specify whether Hyundai plans to make use of the latest iPhones' ultra-broadband technology (UWB), which could allow owners to unlock their car without having to take their phone out of their pocket, or whether it simply wants to use NFC. BMW has previously announced the feature for its all-electric iX, based on the U1 chip found in the iPhone 11 and later.
Apple and Hyundai were previously rumored to be in discussions about producing an electric car together. Hyundai later downplayed these rumors, saying it was no longer in negotiations with the iPhone maker.