Do you like the idea of picking up a big Jeep Wrangler rental San Francisco and going on an exciting California road trip? This is probably the dream of many but the difficulty of driving a rental car in an unfamiliar area may intimidate some travelers.
Yes, today it’s difficult for us to imagine how to drive a car without Google Maps and find a parking lot without Parkopedia. We are all used to relying on these simple yet useful services. However, modern applications can help the driver with more than just these tasks.
We have studied many mobile applications for drivers, and have selected 6 of the most interesting, unique, and useful ones. They will help you make the journey in your personal or rental car easier and safer!
Waze is a user-friendly navigator with a real-time updated road map that works like a social network. All users can update the maps: it’s enough to launch the application, and it will automatically collect, process, and transmit data on road traffic along the route.
Thanks to the current map, the service can choose the optimal route. If necessary, it will change it while driving, taking into account the latest changes in the traffic situation, and warn about traffic jams.
Recently, the developers have added the “Planned trips” item. The application will automatically calculate the travel time to a certain place, taking into account the current traffic situation. So, Waze will tell you when to start your trip in order to arrive on time.
The app is useful when you are seriously late: unlike other navigators, it can build a route through small streets, courtyards, alleys and as a result, take you to your desired location faster. Waze is free to install and works in many countries.
It’s a versatile travel assistant with an amazing set of useful features. Basically, this is a navigation app with augmented reality mode. A phone mounted on the windshield monitors the distance to the vehicle in front and warns the driver with a special signal in the event of a potential collision.
At the same time, iOnRoad makes sure that you don’t cross the road markings and don’t exceed the speed limit on the specific road section. In addition, the application has many other useful features. It will transfer incoming calls to speakerphone, read aloud the received SMS. It also helps you find a parking space and remember it, save snapshots of unforeseen situations at the time of sudden braking or maneuvers.
Many applications on the market turn a smartphone into a full-fledged car DVR, but not all of them are really worthy. The free CamOnRoad app is one of the best. It combines the features of a video recorder, navigator, and radar detector. The result is that you have a convenient navigator based on augmented reality. The route on the smartphone screen is drawn not according to the standard map, as usual, but directly from the picture from the video recorder.
In addition, the application warns the driver about speed cameras and shows the specified objects along the route – for example, gas stations or cafes. The app allows you to set up automatic start and stop recording, select focus modes and video quality, enable loop recording and mark important videos.
Another great advantage of CamOnRoad is the ability to store videos not only on the internal memory but also in remote cloud storage. In any case, you can always find the video you want, even if the phone breaks.
Users of the application receive 2 GB of disk space as a gift, but extra memory is available for an additional fee. Generally, the app does its job well, but the battery drains quite quickly.
Find my car smarter
Many seasoned travelers know that street parking in San Francisco or any other big city can cause headaches. Therefore, they often leave the car in a large parking garage. Unfortunately, it’s then difficult to find your car among thousands of other vehicles.
Apps for finding your own car in the parking lot will come in handy. There are many similar programs, but most have the same drawback: you need to put a mark on the application. This reduces their meaning to nothing: you can put the mark on Google Maps too!
The problem is that we often forget to do it! In this sense, Find My Car Smarter is much better, as it saves the location automatically when parking. What’s more, the paid Pro version even remembers the route that you took from the place of the last stop of the car.
Hudway is a navigator designed specifically for driving at night or in poor visibility conditions. It’s enough to build a route and put your smartphone on the dashboard. After that, you’ll see a real-time road pattern, vehicle speed, and distance to the nearest bend on the windshield. For convenience, voice assistant duplicates the same information.
The application needs the Internet only to download the route. If you create it in advance, Hudway will show you the way even offline. Hudway is shareware, so you can download the application for free. However, you’ll have to purchase a PRO subscription to disable ads and get additional functionality. It costs $0.99 per month and $2.99 per year. You can also test the PRO version for 10 minutes for free to understand whether you need it or not.
The iExit app will show you what you can find when you turn off at the nearest highway exit. By using the user’s location, iExit determines the nearest exit points and provides a list of restaurants, hotels, gas stations, campgrounds, and more. If you prefer to eat at a certain chain of restaurants or refuel at a certain gas station, you just need to indicate this in the preferences section. Thanks to the app, you will never miss the exit you want. This application is especially useful when traveling on US highways.