Continental supplies vehicle manufacturers with a wide-ranging portfolio of
secure and reliable solutions for accessing vehicles and starting engines.
Continental is heavily involved in the ongoing enhancement and development of
innovative car-door access and engine-start systems.
Continental supplied the first
electronic immobiliser back in 1994 and the first PASE (passive start and
entry) keyless start and entry system in 1998. Since then, PASE has been
enhanced with significant improvements such as bidirectional wireless
communication. Continental currently supplies the fourth PASE generation to
Security and reliability are
top priorities for Continental when it comes to locking and identification
solutions. This is why only technologies with proven stability and a high level
of protection are used for evaluating and developing these kinds of solutions.
The engineers focus on anticipating and actively preventing possible attacks.
Yet another important aim of these
developments is to further increase driver and passenger convenience in the
future. A system that is currently being worked on and implemented is one that
automatically recognises the driver as he or she approaches the vehicle. The
system can then activate the interior and/or exterior lighting, for example, to
allow the driver to locate and access the car more easily in the dark. This
also means that personalised features such as seat position, air-conditioning
settings, and entertainment preferences can be activated before the driver even
enters the car.
The Approach Unlock solution
can unlock and even open the car door slightly if required as an authorised
person approaches the vehicle. The same system can also automatically lock the
car after the driver has exited and walked away from the vehicle.
When designing and implementing new access
solutions, Continental naturally also factors in the smartphone and other
on-trend mobile devices such as smart watches. The Gateway Key is an example of
just how the automotive supplier is combining convenience and security in these
solutions. The vehicle key carried by the driver takes on the role of an
intermediary here. It is connected to the vehicle via a secure wireless standard
that is suitable for automotive use, which enables it to then receive commands
from a smartphone or smart-watch app, for example, using Bluetooth Low Energy
(Bluetooth LE, also known as Bluetooth Smart). Unlocking the doors and opening
the windows, amongst other vehicle functions, can therefore be remotely
operated using an app. The developers are also planning to incorporate NFC
(near field communication), which is available in many smartphone models.
The solution also involves
bidirectional communication between the vehicle, the Gateway Key, and the
smartphone, meaning that the transmission path can also upload information from
the vehicle to the mobile end device – including GPS data of the current
vehicle position, whether it is locked or unlocked, or more in-depth
information such as tire pressure, the amount of gas in the tank, and much more
Another possibility in the
future may be offered by adaptable keys -that can be used as so-called “leisure
keys.” An example of this is the Shadow Key, which turns individual hardware,
together with the smartphone, into a key. The smartphone display becomes a
means of entry and is loaded via the NFC interface. This is a possibility for
both current models and new types of vehicles.
The solutions are an example
of Continental’s philosophy, which currently sees Smart Device Integrated
Access System solutions as a complement to the “traditional” access control and
start systems. With these solutions, Continental is proving once again that it
is developing anticipatory and innovative solutions that respond equally to car
users’ desires for maximum convenience and the justifiably high demands
associated with the protection against unauthorized use.
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