Volkswagen has partnered with Trustonic to use the Trustonic Application Protection (TAP) platform to provide owners -- and owners' authorized users -- with a keyless entry to their vehicles via a smartphone app.
“The smartphone is becoming the vehicle key of the future and our We Connect service is the interface for this today in the new Volkswagen Passat,” Alf Pollex, head of Infotainment and Connected Car at Volkswagen AG, said. “The user installs the We Connect app on their smartphone which is then authorized via the infotainment system with a Transaction Number. The Mobile Key will be compatible with Android-based Samsung devices."
No mobile network connection is required to use the smartphone as a mobile key. All the user needs to do is place the smartphone near the door handle, in the same way the Keyless Access keyless locking and starting system opens the Passat today.
"To start the engine, the smartphone is placed in a new compartment with an interface in front of the Passat’s gear knob," Pollex said. "It is also possible to send the mobile key to friends or family via the app so that they can also use their smartphone as a key for the car.”
The TAP platform will ensure data transferred and displayed through a smartphone app is secured, including key transfer requests that can be approved by the authentic user.
Trustonic CEO Ben Cade noted that technology helps in the advancement of the automotive industry and vehicle user experience, yet ensures users his company recognizes that they must constantly advance their understanding of the threats to their technology.
“Connected car innovations like Volkswagen’s project are exciting, but the risk of malicious hacking or malware attacks, including the possibility of vehicle theft, have serious ramifications,” he said. “Trustonic Application Protection is enabling the Volkswagen Digital Key team to develop their key sharing app with the strongest user authentication and advanced app protection, and to use features like our Trusted User Interface to give customers a frictionless user experience."