Volvo to replace carkeys with smartphone app from 2017
Volvo is to offer cars without keys from 2017 with the help of a smartphone app.
The initiative will be piloted this spring via Volvo’s car-sharing firm Sunfleet at Gothenburg airport, Sweden and a limited number of commercially available cars will be equipped with the new digital key technology in 2017. Physical keys will continue to be offered for people who want them.
The new Volvo app operates via Bluetooth and 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.
The 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 to help provide flexibility for personal and corporate mobility needs.
Using the app, people could book and pay for a rental car anywhere in the world and have the digital car key delivered to their phone immediately.
Henrik Green, vice president of product strategy & vehicle line management at Volvo Cars, said: “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.”
“There are obviously many permutations when it comes to how this shared key technology can be used,” added Martin Rosenqvist, new car director, special products at Volvo Cars. “We look forward to seeing how else this technology might be used in the future and we welcome any and all ideas.”