Denso buys InfiniteKey, eyes smartphone as key tech for autos

Auto system supplier Denso bought InfiniteKey to leverage smartphones, Bluetooth Low Energy, and back-end cloud services at scale.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

Denso, an auto systems and component supplier, said it will acquire InfiniteKey in a move that aims to use smartphones as key replacements for access.

InfiniteKey, based in Holland, Michigan, uses smartphones and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology and sensors to use phones as passive keys. In other words, the smartphone may eventually replace the key fob for autos. InfiniteKey's technology can be used in the smart home, shared desks and automotive space. InfiniteKey uses microlocation technology that has accuracy in inches.

According to Denso, InfiniteKey's technology and patents will be critical for automakers as ridesharing and autonomous driving systems take hold. Bill Foy, senior vice president of Denso International America, said "eliminating the need for physical keys will create a headache-free experience for car owners, and ridesharing and driverless services users."

Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.

Denso has had a busy week. Denso, BlackBerry and Intel partnered on an integrated system that puts a vehicle's cluster, head unit, infotainment and entertainment screens on a single processor. In addition, Denso and Toyota are testing Internet of things data analysis via quantum computers.

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