Apple expands UWB in devices like iPhone 12 to more countries

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What you need to know

  • Apple is expanding its Ultra Wideband technology.
  • It has rolled out the tech to several more countries in the iPhone 11, 12, and Apple Watch.
  • Some countries still don't have access, however.

Apple is rolling out wider support for its Ultra Wideband technology used in devices like the iPhone 12 to more countries, according to a support document from the company.

A change noted by MacRumors states that the tech is now available in Argentina, Pakistan, Paraguay, and the Solomon Islands.

Due to regulatory issues, the tech is still not available in the following countries:

  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Belarus
  • Indonesia
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Nepal
  • Russia
  • Tajikistan
  • Turkmenistan
  • Ukraine
  • Uzbekistan

As noted by Apple:

Ultra Wideband is available on iPhone 11 models and iPhone 12 models. Ultra Wideband isn't available in all countries or regions and is subject to international regulatory requirements that require it to be turned off in certain locations.

Apple's U1 chip, which enables UWB, is used in devices like the iPhone and Apple Watch to detect where devices are, it's the secret sauce behind Apple's AirTags and features like handoff on the newer HomePod Mini.

UWB also works on BMW's Digital Key Plus, announced back in January, from that report:

BMW has announced a new upgraded version of its Digital Key feature that will use UWB in the iPhone to unlock its new BMW iX.In a press release BMW stated:As one of the pioneers in the use of a smartphone as a digital vehicle key since 2018, BMW is pressing ahead with the development and popularisation of its BMW Digital Key feature, which is available to iPhone users today. In line with this goal, the premium car manufacturer will introduce the BMW Digital Key Plus, a convenient and secure way to unlock and start your car without taking your iPhone out of your bag or pocket. This latest incarnation of the service is based on Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technology, the technology found on the U1 chip of iPhone. The BMW Digital Key Plus feature will be first launched with the all-electric BMW iX for iPhone.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9