One of the less-talked-about features of the Galaxy S21 series is its ultra-wideband (UWB) chip. It opens up a lot of possibilities for object tracking and high-speed data transfer at short ranges. Earlier this year, Samsung promised that users would be able to unlock their cars with a combination of NFC and UWB technologies.
Galaxy S21+ and Galaxy S21 Ultra users in South Korea have received the functionality via the October security update which began rolling out earlier this week. At the moment, there is no word about supported car models, but we can expect Samsung to put out a list soon. The last we heard, cars made by OEMs such as Audi, BMW, Ford and Genesis would be supported.
Users need to set up a Digital Key on Samsung Pass, following which it can be accessed via your fingerprint. In theory, one can also share the key with a friend who happens to have a compatible phone with a UWB chip. One can also use the technology to find their car in a parking lot.
Samsung usually tests these cutting-edge features in South Korea, so it’ll be a while before it rolls out internationally. The U.S. and Europe should be the next regions to get Digital Key, ideally, followed by other markets.