At the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2015), BMW showed off some of its latest automobile technologies, like lazer headlamps, inductive charging, and touch screen/gesture based interfaces. That’s all dandy and all, but because I have the attention span of a monkey on black tar heroin, what really stood out to me was their shiny new smart key fob.
Basically, the smart key fob is a prism shaped piece of plastic and metal with a few buttons and a 2.2in LCD display. With this display, one can check that car vitals (battery charge level, service intervals, etc). You can open and close windows and set the heater/AC. Oh, and you can unlock/lock the car too.
The key fob’s battery lasts about three months on a charge, but can be charged via a micro USB cable as well as inductive charging that will be built into future BMW cup holders. In short, the Smart Key Fob is basically a smart phone minus the phone part. As of now, this new key is only for the i8, however a little bird has been telling me that the next generation 7-series (as well as possibly the 5 series) will be receiving this key as an option.
Now some may say “Why don’t they (BMW) just make an app for it!!! I don’t like carrying around a key fob in my already skin tight jeans!!!! >:(. This is stupid.” While I agree that most of these features can be done via an app, and yes this key fob is quite big for the hot real estate that is our pocket space. But just look at the thing! It’s wicked cool. Panties will drop every single time you drop this key on the table. And last time I checked, there wasn’t an app that got anyone laid…well except Tinder.