Your iPhone could be about to replace your car keys
Apple wants your smartphone to replace your car keys.
The technology manufacturing giant has already made it possible for your iPhone to replace your wallet and now its seems Apple wants you to use you iPhone in place of your car keys.
A patent granted this week suggests that Apple is working on technology that would allow drivers to use their iPhones or possibly an Apple Watch to access their vehicles.
The patent suggests an iPhone could be made to connect with a vehicle via Bluetooth and an access code. The US patent relates to ‘a primary portable device [that] can access a vehicle by transmitting an activation message including a vehicle access credential to the vehicle.’ This means that drivers could use their iPhone to unlock their car, as well as start the engine.
The patent also suggests that one device – an iPhone for example – could pass a digital key onto another gadget – perhaps another iPhone or the Apple Watch, and this could be used to unlock a car.
Other firms are also working on devices and apps with which to unlock cars. For example, BMW lets drivers of certain cars lock and unlock them using their smartphone and a software firm called Eleks Lab has created an experimental app that could let Tesla drivers control their car's functions from the Apple Watch.
Apple already owns a similar patent that could allow drivers to unlock their vehicle using their iPhone with an ‘accessory control,’ is has been reported.
While many patents never translate into real world products, this one seems as though it could come into fruition as many tech firms are exploring ways to connect devices to vehicles. For example, BMW lets drivers of certain cars lock and unlock them using their smartphone. While Hyundai has launched an Android Wear watch that connects to its Blue Link system to start a car’s engine or lock and unlock its doors. The gadget uses voice recognition to find lost cars in car parks too.
Software engineering company Eleks Lab has created an app to run on the Apple Watch that would allow drivers of Tesla’s Model S to lock their car, turn on its headlights and show where it is parked.
The firm, which has offices in London and in the Ukraine, made the app as an experiment and said it would work using web-service API.
Siemens: Providing the First Industrial 5G Router
Across a number of industry sectors, there’s a growing need for both local wireless connectivity and remote access to machines and plants. In both of these cases, communication is, more often than not, over a long distance. Public wireless data networks can be used to enable this connectivity, both nationally and internationally, which makes the new 5G network mainframe an absolutely vital element of remote access and remote servicing solutions as we move into the interconnected age.
Siemens Enables 5G IIoT
The eagerly awaited Scalance MUM856-1, Siemens’ very first industrial 5G router, is officially available to organisations. The device has the ability to connect all local industrial applications to the public 5G, 4G (LTE), and 3G (UMTS) mobile wireless networks ─ allowing companies to embrace the long-awaited Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).
The router can be used to remotely monitor and service plants, machines, as well as control elements and other industrial devices via a public 5G network ─ flexibly and with high data rates. Something that has been in incredibly high demand after being teased by the leading network providers for years.
Scalance MUM856-1 at a Glance
- Scalance MUM856-1 connects local industrial applications to public 5G, 4G, and 3G mobile wireless networks
- The router supports future-oriented applications such as remote access via public 5G networks or the connection of mobile devices such as automated guided vehicles in industry
- A robust version in IP65 housing for use outside the control cabinet
- Prototypes of Siemens 5G infrastructure for private networks already in use at several sites
“To ensure the powerful connection of Ethernet-based subnetworks and automation devices, the Scalance MUM856-1 supports Release 15 of the 5G standard. The device offers high bandwidths of up to 1000 Mbps for the downlink and up to 500 Mbps for the uplink – providing high data rates for data-intensive applications such as the remote implementation of firmware updates. Thanks to IPv6 support, the devices can also be implemented in modern communication networks.
Various security functions are included to monitor data traffic and protect against unauthorised access: for example, an integrated firewall and authentication of communication devices and encryption of data transmission via VPN. If there is no available 5G network, the device switches automatically to 4G or 3G networks. The first release version of the router has an EU radio license; other versions with different licenses are in preparation. With the Sinema Remote Connect management platform for VPN connections, users can access remote plants or machines easily and securely – even if they are integrated in other networks. The software also offers easy management and autoconfiguration of the devices,” Siemens said.
Preparing for a 5G-oriented Future
Siemens has announced that the new router can also be integrated into private 5G networks. This means that the Scalance MUM856-1 is, essentially, future-proofed when it comes to 5G adaptability; it supports future-oriented applications, including ‘mobile robots in manufacturing, autonomous vehicles in logistics or augmented reality applications for service technicians.’
And, for use on sites where conditions are a little harsher, Siemens has given the router robust IP65 housing ─ it’s “dust tight”, waterproof, and immersion-proofed.
The first release version of the router has an EU radio license; other versions with different licenses are in preparation. “With the Sinema Remote Connect management platform for VPN connections, users can access remote plants or machines easily and securely – even if they are integrated in other networks. The software also offers easy management and auto-configuration of the devices,” Siemens added.