Smartphone Sitting Shotgun
If You Drive a Car, You Need These Apps
Driving visceral vintage cars and knowing the finer points of working a manual transmission or changing your own tire will all get you in touch with your car — in the classic sense. However, you don’t have to be born with an affinity for analog tech to get the most out of your car. From navigation apps (other than Apple Maps) to apps that help you find where cheap(er) gas is, these are our favorite digital friends for the motoring enthusiast.
Ahoy Map Maker
Ahoy Map Maker lets you mark points of interest, map out and share directions to secret scenic drives. Or, you know, you can just keep those secret roads to yourself.
GasBuddy is a way to find and share gas prices in your area. On top of that, just by signing up and sharing prices, you have the chance of winning $100 in gas money every day.
Life certainly doesn’t stop when you get in your car, but sending texts and checking your email should definitely wait until you’re at point B. Drive Safe.ly takes the danger and distraction out of continuing your personal and work life behind the wheel; it reads your received texts and emails aloud so you can keep your attention on the road. Just keep in mind who you’re carpooling with on Monday when your friend sends a recap of Saturday night.
Find My Car
If you’ve ever parked at a stadium, shopping mall or unfamiliar city and found yourself at a total loss as to where you left your car, you need Find My Car. The app utilizes GPS location services and a unique augmented reality interface to help you find the car where you left it.
With iOnRoad, you can upgrade your older or “less equipped” car to the next level with collision warning, speed sign detection and augmented navigation in a single app. Features that are becoming more common on high-end luxury cars can now be yours for $0.99.
If you think navigation apps begin and end at the default Apple Maps or Google Maps, you’re holding yourself (and your driving) back. Waze actively and accurately re-routes you around traffic accidents and construction while alerting you to road hazards and police.
If Tesla’s Model S update didn’t calm your range anxiety, PlugShare will. The app informs you where the nearest charging station is, lets you plan longer trips around charge points on the way, and can link up to your bank account so you can pay for the charge instantly.
Organizing your home screen may help on a day-to-day basis, but the tiny folders and app icons are useless when you’re driving. iCarMode uses an interface with larger app icons which are easier to see, open and switch between while on the go.