The touchscreen-equipped BMW Display Key may have gotten the ball rolling for smart keys in 2015, but Munich is late to the ultimate goal – turning your entire smartphone into an actual key. That ends today, as the company has announced the Digital Key at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.

Set to be rolled out in July – initially on all Samsung smartphones with Near Field Communication (NFC) – the system allows users to lock and unlock the car using just their phone, and will also enable them to start the car with the phone placed on the Qi wireless charging pad. The user will be able to select five other people to share the car “key” with, so that they too will have access to the car.

The Digital Key functionality is enabled through the BMW Connected app, and BMW promises more features and digital services through a future software update. This will likely include Remote Control Parking, currently operated using the Display Key.

Also showcased at the show is an i3 equipped with Level 5 autonomous driving capability, previewing a world where a car can be driven completely by itself. Visitors will be able to summon the car to a pick-up point, where it will greet them by name using an exterior display and use their smartphone for authentication.

Once seated at the rear, users can initiate the journey using the rear seat entertainment system, and the car will set off all on its own with no driver in the seat. They will also be able to control various vehicle functions such as the horn, headlight flashers and door locks, and the car will park itself automatically once the destination is reached.

An expanded feature set of the eSIM card will also be on display – the current system can switch network providers, enabling the continued use of BMW Connected Drive services even in other countries. Adding a second card allows the car to be linked to users existing mobile contract, so users can make calls directly through the car’s aerial for improved reception. This function also means that the car can leverage on the user’s data allowance for the built-in WiFi hotspot, as well as other services in their contract.

Lastly, BMW has announced that it will add new features to car-to-infrastucture communication systems, or Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS). These include information on roadworks, requests to clear up space on the road for emergency vehicles and warnings regarding dynamic speed limits. The company is also working on rolling out Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-VTX) technology allowing for car-to-car communication – vital for BMW’s vision of connected and cooperative automated driving.