LG Innotek develops compact digital car key module for enhanced security and accuracy

By Lim Chang-won Posted : January 25, 2021, 10:06 Updated : January 25, 2021, 10:06

[Courtesy of LG Innotek]

SEOUL -- LG Innotek, the electric component unit of South Korea's LG Group, has developed a compact digital car key module featuring the increased accuracy of location recognition and security technology that can prevent hacking by blocking the manipulation of communication between smartphones or interference with radio waves. Mass-production is possible in 2022.

Digital keys allow consumers to easily and confidently use mobile devices to access vehicles. Smartphones can be used to operate door locks and start engines. For security, digital key technology uses near field communication and a low-energy Bluetooth connection to communicate with the vehicle. Digital keys offer enhanced security and privacy protections.

LG Innotek said that its digital key module can locate smartphones more accurately than before by applying ultra-wideband technology and its own algorithm. The error range between the actual location of smartphones and the module's recognition location is 10cm. The company targets global auto companies because it followed standards set by the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC), which works on a digital key standard for mobile device-to-vehicle connectivity.

"It will be possible to implement various mobility services that can increase customer value by utilizing digital key modules," LG Innotek's car parts business head Ryu In-soo said in a statement. Due to its compact size, the company said its module can be mounted anywhere inside and outside the vehicle.

LG Innotek said that with its module, users can open only the driver's car door in advance and automatically start the engine. It provides a customized driving environment. If several people share a car, the module recognizes the location of individual smartphones and optimizes the driver's seat or side mirror. Even if several people with the same digital key on board at once, it can pinpoint who is in the driver's seat.

South Korea's Hyundai auto group has developed digital key technology that allows drivers to access, start, operate and control cars with smartphones. Drivers can lock or unlock vehicles by touching the door handle. A personalization profile was applied to automatically adjusts the outside mirror, the driver's seat, the steering wheel position and other functions set in advance.

Hyundai's digital key allows a car owner to share it with up to four other people. Authorized joint users can download it to their smartphone apps, but car owners can restrict certain functions. The auto group has developed a smart fingerprint authentication access and ignition system that allows drivers to unlock the door and start the engine by placing a finger onto sensors fitted into door handles and a driving wheel.

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