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The Key Has Evolved... Meet kēvo

How long is it since you last unlocked your car with an actual metal key? More and more cars are coming with keyless start too, soon the concept of a physical key for a car will have disappeared.

So how about your home?

Kwikset thinks it has the next generation of key ready to go in the kēvo and, if it delivers all that it promises I can see this being a real must-have product for home owners everywhere.

To unlock the kēvo you touch your smartphone to it. Its as simple as that. You can even create additional access for users on the fly - need to let a friend or relative in whilst away? Login and create a key for them. That's pretty smart.

And for office users currently tied to expensive door entry control systems this could mean the end of expensive maintenance contracts and smart cards too.

The mechanism for unlocking is not NFC - security weaknesses in that technology should be enough to make you wary of it - but Bluetooth. Using the Smart Ready profile which is part of the Bluetooth 4.0 standard, with added application specific encryption it means that you can probably be comfortable that the lock can't be hacked. In fact the weakest part of the security is the retention of the physical key itself - presumably so that you can still get in if you lose your phone or the batteries fail.

That it runs on 4 AA batteries, with a life of one year, is sensible. Replacing the batteries is going to be much less of a pain than being locked out next time there's a power cut.

The application will be iPhone 4S and 5 exclusive for the moment, so Android device owners have to wait before they can join the party.

No word on when the devices will be shipping, nor more importantly what the likely cost is going to be either.

When it does though its certainly looking like a must-have to me.


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