Samsung's digital car key can now unlock certain Kia, BMW and Genesis models

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra burgundy colorway
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Samsung's digital car key has added support for more vehicles from BMW, Genesis, and Kia.
  • The Genesis vehicles support both NFC and UWB on compatible smartphones.
  • However, BMW and Kia's cars only work with NFC.

Samsung's digital car key has arrived on selected Genesis, BMW, and Kia vehicles. As spotted by TizenHelp, the tech giant has expanded the list of supported cars that are compatible with the feature.

The list mentions the BMW 1 to 8 Series, Z4, X5 to X7, iX3, iX, and i4. It has also added support for the Kia Niro and Genesis G90.

It should be noted that the Genesis GV60 has already had the feature for quite some time. This means the digital key is seeing quite an expansion with this latest change.

However, the feature is not available to everyone just yet. Unless you own any of Samsung's best Android phones, including the Galaxy S21 series, Galaxy S22 series, Galaxy Z Fold 3, Galaxy Z Flip 3, or Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, you won't be able to unlock your vehicle using your handset.

For the uninitiated, the feature detects when you're close to a compatible car and unlocks it via UWB or NFC. That said, only the Genesis models are compatible with both UWB and NFC. The Kia and BMW vehicles only support NFC.

There's another limitation, though. Samsung’s digital key is only available to customers in South Korea.

Nonetheless, the feature is expected to make its way to the United States and European markets soon. Samsung first unveiled its digital key for smart homes and vehicles along with the launch of the Galaxy S21 series earlier last year.

But it's not the only option for Android users. Google launched a similar feature with Android 12 last year, and it's compatible with certain 2020 and 2021 BMW models sold in the U.S., UK, and a few European countries.

Jay Bonggolto
News Writer & Reviewer

Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.