Tell Us Your Favorite Auto App

Got a favorite car-related app? Something you use for navigation? Maintenance and repair? Road Trip Planning? Keeping busy during a ride? Donut locating?

We’re creating a guide to the top car-related apps, and we need your suggestions.

iPhone? iPad? Android? We don’t care. Which car-related apps do you actually use, and why? You can define “car-related” as broadly as you like. Even my brother’s “daily rust tracker” app would count.

Share your suggestions here.

In a week or two, we’ll publish the results.

aCar is what I use to track fill-ups and repairs.

When we go on car and motorcycle trips with friends we use an iPhone app called Trip Splitter which lets you very easily and quickly enter shared expenses and who paid. At the end of the trip the app tells you the simplest payments to get even.

Droid/Google Maps and voice navigation. Amazingly powerful, and the speech recognition really works. The traffic/satellite layers are superb. I gave away my Garmin Nuvi after they wanted $169 or something just to update the maps.

I have noticed that the info on the Navigation app on my Droid X is outdated. The symbol is a blue arrowhead, pointing upwards on the screen. It sent me to a chain restaurant that had been closed for at least two years rather than the new one, that has been open for over two years, a few blocks away. Is there another/better navigation app for the Droid?

The last time I checked into updating my nuvi 350 they wanted $70. I didn’t do it. Now I can buy a brand new one with more bells and whistles, and I assume up-to-date info, for $159.

There is a great app for the iPhone called Audiobooks that has thousands of free audiobooks to listen to. Perfect for the long road trip.

I like Trapster. Its a “crowd-sourced” speed trap reporting system. Its integrated with Google Maps so it also includes the Google Maps’ traffic flow information. The quality of the speed trap information relies on user participation, so it works better in more populated areas. You should also have a good mobile mount for your device if you plan to report traps so you can tap the right buttons without too much distraction. Fortunately, in my car I can tap the screen without taking either hand off of the steering wheel.

I also like Global Real Time Traffic & Radar. Its also a crowd sourced information application.

What’s An App ? I Don’t Go In For That Kinky Stuff !


I use the free app “MPG tracker” to keep track of my mileage and money paid for gas.

I use MileBug to track my business and charitable miles. As a consultant who visits the same 2-3 clients each week, I’ve found it to be very handy. It remembers favorite/frequent trips classified by business or charitable and calculates the deductible expense. You can send an excel-readable report to your email every so often.

I found a cool app on a recent trip to the DC area. It’s called Brad & Jays Getaways Washington DC. It’s a tour guide book app that had a lot of cool places in and around the nations capital. The nice part is on the way there the kids were able to read the write ups about the places and decide where they wanted to see in person. It doesn’t have navigation or a bunch of social network connections, but it’s got good info and it’s definitely worth a look. I think they have another one too, but I can’t remember where it’s for.

An app my wife and I use all the time for our three vehicles is Gas Cubby for the iPhone (not to be confused with Gas Buddy). Every time we fill up we put in the details of our purchase and it keeps track and calculates our mileage. And we can sync the data so no mater which of us enters the data regardless of vehicle, it updates the data for that vehicle and we can both see it. I also use it to keep track of service & repairs of the vehicles. So now when I go to the “hurry-up” lube and the guy says I need a new air filter, I can say “no thanks - I just changed it myself last week”.

By far, my favorite car related app is Gasbuddy. I’ve been using the site since the summer of 08 when oil prices hit their record high, and the app for Adroid is great! If you give it access to your phone’s internal GPS, it will pull up a survey of local gas prices that other cost-conscious gasoline consumers have submitted to the website (do your part and contribute!). This is a great way of sparing yourself the pain of “Oh, darn, the next station around the corner was ten cents cheaper” after you’ve already filled up!

I use Waze on my way to work and home if I hear there is a traffic problem.

Waze is a free GPS application that crowdsources traffic reports. Every waze user also sends traffic information so the directions waze sends me avoids bad traffic.

A friend of mine with an Android phone gave me a “Glympse” as to where he was, how fast he was going and how soon he’d arrive at my door.

I use it on my iPhone to tell my family where I am, or if I made it home so I don’t get in trouble when I forget to call (especially in the wee hours). Even so, I still get flack for going too fast.

I found MotionX GPS (Iphone)works very well for a gps app to use while four-wheeling. You can pre-download the maps so it will work even when there is no service. I basically use it like my old hand-help garmin gps since it has the same features as a normal hiking type gps including waypoint etc.

For on-road. I use “Dashboard” on the iphone. Its a basic Dashboard that shows Speed, trip distance/time, altitude, and heading. The speedometer on the app is much more accurate that that on our 32 year old van. It also has a HUD mode where you can put the phone on the dashboard and see it as a Heads up Display off the windshield.

I love this app too. The only problem is that in some areas reporting isn’t very good. I still use it every time I need to fill up. Even if you can’t find a station around the corner, it’s a good gauge of prices so you can tell if you’re paying too much.

Carrr Matey is an Android app that lets you efficiently keep track of where your car is parked – a must for those of us who park on the street, and can never remember where we left the vehicle this time. And it does it with a piratical accent…

I wrote and maintain Car Minder for the iPhone. I would say that it is the best app out there for tracking car maintenance, repairs and fuel economy. Since I got into taking care of the car myself by listening to Car Talk, I have to give Car Talk some of the credit for the app even existing in the first place.

Love aCar for auto expense tracking and GasBuddy for finding cheaper gas…