Top 5 Motoring Apps
Owning a vehicle in the ‘digital age’ is so much easier; some of them can drive themselves, find a parking spot, talk to other vehicles … the technology is incredible, and it’s only really just getting started. But what about the more mundane side of owning a car? Forgotten when your VED is due? Want to buy another car? Or calculate just what MPG you’re really getting?
Yes, all of that can be done with a swipe of a finger, a click of a button and the odd pinch & zoom gesture. It really is that easy.
These are our Top 5 apps that we actually use!
Auto Trader (free)
Whether you’re looking to buy a car or just like browsing for the sake of it, the Auto Trader app has everything you need, and the best bit is … you’re not having to leaf through a paper magazine, randomly searching – you can refine your search for pretty much anything and anywhere.
We love using the app when we have five minutes spare, just picking our lottery win garage, and once registered, you can even save the cars to your own virtual garage for a later date.
Motoring and the Law £2.99
OK, so it’s not free, but it really is a wealth of useful information.
This has been created by the Police National Legal Database (PNLD) to make understanding the law simpler, and it covers pretty much every motoring related topic you’ll need, having said that, there’s even the facility to email the developers with any motoring questions you can’t find the answer to.
Always up-to-date, and always accurate, you won’t need to worry about the information going out of date or being superseded. The perfect motoring accompaniment.
Vehicle Smart (free)
There is an option for Premium users, but in all honesty, you don’t need that.
Vehicle Smart is a great way to keep your vehicle up-to-date with Tax & MOT, but it will also do so much more; insurance reminders, warranty schedules, notes for each vehicle stored (tyre pressures or sizes, oil type … any useful information that you want to keep at hand).
The free version offers:
- Full MOT History
- MOT Status
- Tax Status
- Vehicle Tax Bands & Costs
- Mileage Data Analysis
- MOT Reminders
- Tax Reminders
Real MPG (free)
Ever wondered just what your actual real-world MPG is? Of course many cars have an onboard computer that can tell you, but sometimes they aren’t that accurate, and if you’re more vintage rather than new-age, your vehicle may not have that facility.
Real MPG has been developed by HonestJohn.co.uk, a motoring website that offers unbiased advice on all things motoring related, the premise is simple – a real-world fuel economy register which people upload their figures to – more than 100,000 submissions currently.
With it being user submission, you can even share your figures to Facebook, which may not sound all that exciting, but if you’re a bit James May, you could then challenge your friends to beat your average.
DashCam 2 (free)
We’ve all seen the funny videos of people doing strange things in front of a car, all recorded by a dash cam, but in the real world, a dash cam can be an invaluable tool in the fight against insurance fraud, speeding tickets, and be used as proof in the event of an accident.
DashCam 2 is a free app for those that haven’t yet made the conversion to having a dedicated camera installed, and it has some pretty useful features –
Video recording, route tracking, speed & average speed tracking, distance tracking, start time & date, loop recording, video sharing … pretty much everything that you’d need from a dash cam. Our recommendation would be to try something like the app, then go for an installed camera.
Checkout our full dash cam article - The Rise Of The Dash Cam
There are hundreds of apps available to the motorist, some good, some not, but as with most tech, once you start using these apps to help you, you’ll wonder how you ever managed without them. There are fewer apps that charge for purchase, these are called ‘Freemium’ which are free to install and use with limited functionality, but offer in-app purchases – these aren’t strictly necessary.
Where you’re asked to pay for the app, read the reviews first – despite having a price tag, it doesn’t mean they’re better than the free versions.