Most modern cars these days have on-board-computers. These computers can give you information such as your average MPG, average speed and how many miles you have left in the tank. However that on-board-computer has its limits and sometimes won’t give you as detailed information as you would like.
Automatic wants to take your cars on-board-computer to the next level by connecting your car to your smartphone. Nearly every car sold in the US since 1996 has a data port, from which you can connect a computer and find out information about your car. This data port is usually only used by manufactures when servicing your car, making changes to the on-board-computer to just trying to find out more detailed information. Automatic has built a little device, they’re called the ‘Automatic Link’ which connects to this data port. You then connect to the ‘Automatic Link’ with your smartphone via Bluetooth. You then use the Automatic app provided to find out more information on your car.
Once you’re all set up and connected you’ll be given a lot more information about your car and your driving. It learns your driving style and will help you learn how to save fuel. It has a little speaker built-in to the device that makes a sound when you’re either braking too hard or accelerating too harshly – this will notify you to take it easier so you don’t wear your brakes out as quickly and waste fuel by accelerating too harshly.
The app will store information about your driving so over the week you can see how many MPG you did, how many miles you did, how long or short a journey was, and it’ll even track local petrol prices so you can track how much you’re spending.
A very neat feature of Automatic is the ability to detect a crash. It has an accelerometer built-in that can detect a crash. It’ll then automatically use your phone and report the crash to 911 with your name, location and vehicle. After it’s done that, it’ll even text your loved ones to tell them what’s happened. All for free.
Other cool features include the ability to give you information about your engine, whether you have any engine problems. And the ability to show you were you parked because it has GPS built into the unit.
Most smartphones now come with Bluetooth 4.0 and the ‘Automatic Link’ uses that technology so you can be assured your battery won’t be murdered whilst it’s connected.
The product is available for pre-order now but unfortunately it’s only available in the US. I’ve contacted the company asking when it’ll come to the UK, I will then update accordingly.