Apple patents wireless smartphone car key that would make car-sharing easier

With the appearance of a new patent from Apple it seems that Project Titan, Apple’s connected car project, will include some serious streamlining when it comes to the keys.

The patent, which was granted today, shows how a smartphone (or any portable, touch-screen device) can be used to access a vehicle remotely using a secure credential over a wireless connection like Bluetooth. The patent also adds that a secondary smartphone can be given access to the car through authorization from the first, and that authorization can have set parameters.

What this means in non-patent speak is that users could allow a family member, for example, to access their connected car only between certain hours, or for a certain length of time.

apple patent

The patent also notes that this feature could add to the security of the vehicle, by only allowing the car to start if a device with the correct credential was detected or connected.

The patent makes its statements in broad terms, speaking generally about any portable device and vehicle, but of course the idea has direct application to Apple’s electric car project, which is an “open secret,” according to Tesla founder Elon Musk.

Related reading: Apple Car may be manufactured by Canadian automotive supplier Magna

[source]USPTO[/source][via]Patently Apple[/via]