a close up shot of a car key and an electronic handbrake

Why Are Key Fobs So Expensive?

We often take for granted how incredibly convenient life has gotten. What used to take minutes now only takes a matter of seconds — and the same can be said about the transition from regular car keys to key fobs. Offering both convenience and enhanced security, key fobs are a must for any modern vehicle. However, one notable drawback of these high-tech key fobs is their relatively steep price when compared to regular keys. We’ll attempt to dive into a few of the reasons why key fobs are so ludicrously expensive.

Advanced Technology

Unsurprisingly, one of the primary factors regarding why key fobs are so expensive pertains to the technology found inside of it. From microchips and transmitters, to receivers, it takes a variety of electronic components to communicate wirelessly with the car’s security system. Thus, the cost to accrue these materials, as well as hire individuals who are comfortable programming these key fobs, will inevitably result in the price being higher than the traditional key counterpart.

Enhanced Security Features

Did you know that your key fob is not only more convenient, but also more secure as well? Modern vehicles utilize encryption algorithms, rolling codes, and other mechanisms to prevent theft and unauthorized access. Naturally, these security measures necessitate the integration of complex systems within the key fob, ensuring secure communication with the car’s immobilizer system, which takes a fair amount of research and development. As such, the implementation of these sophisticated security features drive up the overall cost of electronic key fobs.

Licensing and Intellectual Property

We’ve gone over the fact that there’s a fair amount of money invested into the research and development of key fobs, which indubitably drives up production costs, and thus the overall price. However, patenting is another reason why consumers have to pay an exorbitant amount of money just to access their car. Patents help to ensure that the unique features and functionalities remain exclusive to the developers (after all, how annoying would it be to see someone scoop up your hard work without having had to put in any of the effort). Moreover, licensing agreements, royalties, and ongoing research and development efforts further contribute to the overall cost.

Replacement Costs

We’ve all faced the unfortunate event where we, for some reason or another, can’t seem to recall where we placed our keys. Once we’ve finally accepted the inevitable and go to get our key fob replaced, the manufacturer has to go through the process of synchronizing a new key set with your vehicle. This process requires not only advanced technology, but a knowledgeable expert to manage the process, thus contributing to the overall cost of the electronic key fob.

While electronic car key fobs undoubtedly offer enhanced security, convenience, and additional features, their higher price can be a major setback to many Arizonans, especially as inflation continues to skyrocket. While many of the reasons regarding why electronic key fobs are so expensive can be explained, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still a hefty sum of money to hand over. Furthermore, with advancements in vehicles and technology becoming an every-day occurrence, it’s plausible that the prices we see for key fobs will only continue to grow as time goes on. If you need key duplication services as you search for a more affordable solution, reach out to Phoenix EZ-Keys to see if we can help you out.

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