Does lending someone your car mean that you will have to lend them your phone?


ut away your car keys for good. In the future, when it comes to entering and starting your car, there will be an app for that.

Hyundai is working on a system that uses near-field communication (NFC) to allow drivers to swipe their phones over an embedded chip to unlock the car door. After that, drivers can place their phone over an inductive charging plate mounted in the center console (which will keep the battery charged) and the car will recognize the phone, allowing the user to start the car's engine.

Hyundai i30 Hyundai is installing the technology concept in its i30 (Elantra in the U.S.) compact

Hyundai is also planning to allow drivers to use the system to customize preference such as seating preference, mirror position, and infotainment systems.

We have some questions about this idea. First, does lending someone your car mean that you will have to lend them your phone? Second, does this mean that you can't leave your phone in the car on a quick run into a convenience store and still lock the doors? What happens should you lose your phone or have it stolen? Will there be some sort of backup system, such as a standard key fob or a keypad that could be used to enter a code for entry?

We’ve reached out to Hyundai, but as of press time, we haven't received a response.

We're also wondering if consumers will latch on to the idea, especially since apps like Passbook and Key Ring haven't totally replaced wallets and key-chain discount cards just yet. Still, if this isn't a sign that automakers have intentions to integrate smartphones into more and more aspects of automotive life, than we don't know what is.