Have you ever had to break into your own apartment because you couldn’t find your keys? Almost We all have been there, staring forlornly at a locked door, keyless, with Gandalf’s rumbling voice echoing in our heads, telling us that we would not pass. But the people behind the Apple iPhone app KeyMe are determined to make it a thing of the past.
KeyMe’s cloud-based key management platform means you no longer need a physical key in order to make a copy. Once you store your “digital key,” you don’t have to worry about lockouts and paying hundreds of dollars for an emergency locksmith visit.
In Short here’s how it works:
The startup’s free new mobile app scans a copy of your key and generates a set of instructions that you can give to any locksmith, anywhere in the country, the app walks you through how to do this. From there, any locksmith can create a new key for you via snapshots and duplication instructions displayed through the app.
Key scanning on the app is strictly designed to prevent “flyby” photos, Marsh said. It requires photos of both sides of the key snapped four inches away on a white sheet of paper, detached from the keychain.
You can also order duplicate keys by mail, which cost between $4.99 to $6.99 apiece and arrive within 2-3 days. The app is free, but if you need to access duplication instructions it costs $9.99. That’s still a lot cheaper than making an emergency call to the locksmith.
One of the Worst Idea:
KeyMe’s foray into key-sharing on mobile is bound to raise some eyebrows over security. What if you share credentials with a boyfriend who turns out to be a crazy stalker? You better know what major things will happen after it.
Story Behind KeyMe:
Like there is an Idiom ‘Necessity is the mother of invention’, the same fits in the invention of KeyMe. This locking out scenario happened frequently enough to Greg Marsh and his fiancée that he turned it into a business. He was tired of waiting an hour for the locksmith and forking over $150.
KeyMe’s development started in Columbia Business School two years ago, where Marsh teamed up with engineering students. He took a leave of absence from school, as Steve Jobs & Mark Zuckerberg to raise KeyMe’s first round of funding.
Key Scan Error:
One of my friend installed KeyMe on his iPhone 4S, setup was fast, simple, and super secure, and so was scanning a copy of key. Unfortunately, the key to the door of his apartment building is not yet supported. He got a message saying “This key type is not supported. We can do about 70% of the keys out there and are working hard to add new ones.”