Tim Cook says Apple Watch will replace electronic car keys, confirms Apple Store revamp

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited March 2015
Apple is already attempting to eliminate the need for consumers to carry a wallet and may soon extend its assault to the second pat of the venerable three-pat technique, as Apple chief executive Tim Cook said this week that the company designed its forthcoming Apple Watch to replace electronic car keys and fobs.


Cook shakes hands with employees at the Covent Garden Apple Store. | Via The Telegraph


Cook's automotive revelation came during an interview with the Telegraph in London, where the Apple chief stopped en route back to Cupertino. He had been in Germany and Israel, inaugurating the company's new research and development center in Herzliya.

It is unclear whether Apple intends to deploy technology that duplicates the functionality of current-generation keyless entry systems, or if it will seek to convince automakers to integrate Apple Watch compatibility in future vehicles. Some have speculated that the current spate of rumors surrounding the development of an Apple Car actually point to an expansion of CarPlay, with a new mandate to completely replace existing in-vehicle infotainment and telematics systems.

In addition, Apple will "tweak" its retail strategy to fit the Apple Watch, Cook confirmed to employees during a visit to the iconic Covent Garden Apple Store. Previous reports have suggested that design czar Jony Ive and retail chief Angela Ahrendts are working side-by-side on a revamp designed to make the stores appeal to potential Apple Watch buyers more accustomed to shopping in boutiques.

"The new spaces will surely become a more natural setting for vitrines filled with gold (and perhaps less welcoming, at least in some corners, to tourists and truants)," The New Yorker's Ian Parker said of the changes last week.

Cook also let slip a few new Apple Watch tidbits, noting that the device's battery will last all day, and will require less charging time than an iPhone. The charger is said to use a "special magnet technology."

Apple will discuss the Watch in detail during a special event set to be held in San Francisco on March 9. AppleInsider will bring live coverage from that presentation as it unfolds.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 201

    That's one thing I hate about electronic keys, is that the battery lasts for years.

  • Reply 2 of 201
    Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post

    That's one thing I hate about electronic keys, is that the battery lasts for years.



    Which reminds me, I need to put a new battery in my fob.

  • Reply 3 of 201
    That looks rather like the Covent Garden store rather than the Regent Street store?
  • Reply 4 of 201
    They either came up with a very efficient charging system or they're pushing a ton of amperage through the charging system. Sounds like the battery life issues are solved though.
  • Reply 5 of 201
    I like that Cook is far more open about new products than jobs ever was. Though the expectations of the devices often drove sales.
  • Reply 6 of 201
    therealtom wrote: »
    I like that Cook is far more open about new products than jobs ever was. Though the expectations of the devices often drove sales.

    Apple under Tim Cook now has more cash to spend on product development than Apple under Steve Jobs. Remember: Steve gutted Apple's product portfolio and imposed discipline when Apple was 90 days away from bankruptcy.
  • Reply 7 of 201
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,594member
    astrofish wrote: »
    That looks rather like the Covent Garden store rather than the Regent Street store?
    My first thought.
  • Reply 8 of 201

    Which reminds me, I need to put a new battery in my fob.

    Thanks for not putting FOB. I always see people doing that and I'm like...what is FOB supposed to stand for?
  • Reply 9 of 201
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     

     

    and gives no warning its about to die


     

    Well, it does lose range on remote unlock, if you use that.

     

    Many cars also have a "keyless remote low battery warning" on the info display

     

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post



    They either came up with a very efficient charging system or they're pushing a ton of amperage through the charging system. Sounds like the battery life issues are solved though.

     

    If they did something like QualComm's QuickCharge 2.0, then they'll be in business. It pushes really hard at the bottom of the charge and tapers it. With my Moto X, I burn a ton of GPS on bike rides (Strava, MMR, etc), so my battery doesn't usually make it past 5pm w/out a charge.

     

    With QC, I can pop it on the 12V in the car for 10 minutes and it will bounce from 16% to 38%. From a dead battery to fully charged, it's 40 minutes if the phone is on, and around 30 minutes if it's off. This is a mediocre battery that will run about 20 hours with normal screen use and no GPS for me.

     

    With similar ramped power technology, and a significantly smaller battery in the Apple Watch, I'll bet you could get a full charge in around 10 minutes from empty. That should quiet a lot of haters.

  • Reply 10 of 201
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post





    Thanks for not putting FOB. I always see people doing that and I'm like...what is FOB supposed to stand for?

    FOB= "Fixed On Board" It's a shipping term. FOB purchaser means they pay the shipping and bear risk of loss for the state price. FOB manufacturer is...you guessed it.

  • Reply 11 of 201

    Someone with experience can explain this better, but I think if a car's ignition system is tied to an electronics package that can hear a BTLE 4 signal, the app to make this work from an iPhone or Apple Watch is sort of trivial? I think perhaps there is some security to be worked out for sure, but the hard part is all on the car side. Maybe car manufacturers can all agree on some communication standard?

     

    But then, car companies make significant revenue from selling fobs and rekeying consumer systems. It will be interesting to see what comes of it, but unlikely anything I will ever use. I'm an old junk car person.

  • Reply 12 of 201
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post

     

    Many cars also have a "keyless remote low battery warning" on the info display


    And, typically, a physical key that slides out.

  • Reply 13 of 201
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eightzero View Post

     

    FOB= "Fixed On Board" It's a shipping term. FOB purchaser means they pay the shipping and bear risk of loss for the state price. FOB manufacturer is...you guessed it.


    I think it stands for "Free On Board"?

     

    (Edit: Added a link ;-))

  • Reply 14 of 201
    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

    Thanks for not putting FOB. I always see people doing that and I'm like...what is FOB supposed to stand for?



    It’s as bad as MAC. As though it stands for something like PC.

  • Reply 15 of 201
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

     



    It’s as bad as MAC. As though it stands for something like PC.




    Yep. And anyone who would put MAC in that context has no idea what a MAC address is. <img class=" src="http://forums-files.appleinsider.com/images/smilies//lol.gif" />

  • Reply 16 of 201
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

     



    It’s as bad as MAC. As though it stands for something like PC.


     

    It's a cosmetics line.

  • Reply 17 of 201
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    I wonder how it works with multiple cars?

     

    I chuckled at the "three-pat technique". That is me.

     

    wallet - check

    cell phone - check

    car key - check

  • Reply 18 of 201

    My keyless car fob lasts for a year or more on a single battery. If Apple wants me to replace that with the Apple Watch, they will need to greatly improve battery life.

  • Reply 19 of 201
    Great, so when your watch battery dies (which it will daily) then you can't start your car!

    No problem here
  • Reply 20 of 201
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,116member

    I'm really debating whether to throw another 10-20K into Apple stock. If the Apple Watch launch is a massive success we could be in a valley right now. But who knows. 

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