Apple yesterday released the first beta of iOS 13.4.5 to developers. The code strings in the beta release have revealed more details about CarKey and also point to the impending launch of the 4.7-inch iPhone 9.
CarKey has been previously detailed after references of it were found in iOS 13.4 beta releases. The feature will turn one’s iPhone into a Digital Carkey that can be used to lock/unlock it. A user will also be able to share their digital car keys over iMessage with their friends or family. The feature will be supported by selected BMW vehicles at launch. Code strings in iOS 13.4.5 point to the feature being available for iPhones with Touch ID as well. It was earlier believed that the digital car key feature would only be available on iPhones with Face ID, but it looks like Apple plans on bringing this feature to its older devices as well.
The CarKey feature relies on the Express Transit card technology which is found on iPhone 6s and higher. However, it is only on the iPhone XR and newer models that the tech can work even when the phone’s battery is dead. iOS 13.4.5 code strings also point to an iPhone with Touch ID that is compatible with CarKey and Express Transit cards with power reserve. Since none of the existing iPhones with Touch ID support Transit cards with power reserve, the code string is likely referring to the upcoming 4.7-inch iPhone 9.
The code strings make it clear that the iPhone 9 launch is imminent. A rumor from earlier today claims that Apple could launch the iPhone 9 in mid-April and the device could go on sale starting April 22. Given the COVID-19 pandemic though, it is possible that Apple will further end up delaying the launch of the iPhone 9.[Via 9t05Mac]