Have you ever been jealous of folks with expensive cars who can lock, unlock and even start their rides remotely using their keys? We can’t all afford to buy the latest BMWs and while remotely activating your vehicle is far from a necessity (unless maybe you’re a getaway driver), it’s certainly an impressive application of modern technology and a bit of a status symbol.
So whilst hugely expensive modern cars may be out of a lot of people’s price range, smartphones are a much more affordable piece of technology and are increasingly prevalent in many parts of the world. If you own an iPhone, you can now enjoy showing off to your friends by starting your car anywhere with the Viper SmartStart application (note: SmartStart must also be installed in your vehicle for this to work).
Although the system is currently only available to users in the US and Canada, the Viper team are currently working on rolling out the application for international users, meaning we’ll soon have the app in the UK.
The Smart Start app allows you to lock and unlock your car remotely, unlock the trunk (and open it depending on your make and model of car) and start the engine. There’s also a ‘panic’ feature which allows you to set of the cars’ alarm remotely, which is a useful feature if you live in a high-rise block of apartments where you can see your car but can’t reach it quickly.
The range of the application is phenomenally impressive; whereas unlocking with your keys requires you to be within a certain proximity of the vehicle, the Smart Start app allows you to unlock and start your car from practically anywhere via 3G or WiFi. Although I’m not sure why you’d want to necessarily, it’s an impressive demonstration of the Smart Start technology. Check out this video which demonstrates the app being used to start a car from 3,000 miles away:
In order to use the software, you’ll need to download the app from iTunes, install the system in your car and setup a Smart Start account on their website.
I can’t wait to use this app once it becomes available in the UK, and I think it’s a really good example of just how sophisticated smartphone applications are becoming.
Directed Electronics, Inc., Viper SmartStart – Free
This article was brought to you by guest contributor J.D. He spends his life around cars, he works for a temporary car insurance company specialising in one day insurance. He drives a Ford Focus but would far prefer a Dodge Viper!