Declared earlier this year, the Automatic Smart Driving Assistant is a Bluetooth 4.0 gadget that plugs in to your vehicle’s OBD-II port. Usually discovered someplace under the steering wheel of every vehicle made after 1996 in the UNITED STATE, the OBD-II port provides all kinds of beneficial diagnostic info which typically is just made use of by mechanics and for exhausts screening.
Over the years, a number of gadgets have been released for home mechanics to link to this port– both to a Mac via USB and to iOS devices through the dock port. Nonetheless, for the mechanical layperson none of them have been that helpful, with functionality particularly for figuring out why your ‘Check Engine’ light is on or otherwise tuning/tweaking your engine.
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Automatic changes all that. The Smart Driving Assistant has to do with the size of 2 matchbooks, and lives its life regularly connected to your car’s OBD-II port. Unpacking the gadget is uneventful, as all that’s actually in the box is the Smart Driving Assistant, a little Automatic ‘A’ bumper sticker, and a notepad that essentially tells you to download the Automatic app on your iPhone. Setup is easy, and includes producing a simple login to the Automatic service and afterwards coupling your iPhone utilizing the distinct safety code printed on the bottom of the Smart Driving Assistant.
From there, it asks you to begin your vehicle, and you are on your method. Amusingly enough, to obtain the setup to really complete the engine of your vehicle needs to begin. I drive a 2011 Prius, and the internal combustion engine just ignites when it’s really needed. So, there was a bit of confusion between what the app was asking me to do (merely start my vehicle) and what I’d to do, which totaled up to simply generating around the block so the gas engine started.
The Automatic app runs in the background and immediately links to the Smart Driving Assistant whenever you enter your car. Regardless of whether or not you even have the app open, once you begin driving, it starts tracking every little thing you are doing. Information points captured consist of how long you were generating (both in time and distance), your miles per gallon, the number of times you both braked or sped up too difficult, and how many minutes you were driving over 70 miles per hour. Your course is also conserved and outlined on a map, and by tracking neighborhood gas prices the app computes just how much each trip cost you.
All of this information is tallied together for your regular totals and averages which is shown at the top of your generating timeline. Additionally, using the information the app collects, it computes a ‘Drive Rating’ to grade you on how efficiently it thinks you are driving. In its current execution this scoring system seems crazy, as right now I am shaking a 35 out of 100 in my Prius, regardless of the truth that I am going beyond the EPA estimated MPG of my vehicle. The Automatic blog discusses tweaking this formula, as today it isn’t computed on a particular car-by-car basis and instead is simply grading you on hard brakes, acceleration, and how often you are generating over 70 MPH.
Arguably the most beneficial function of the Automatic Smart Driving Assistant’s present implementation is effortlessly conserving the location of where you parked your automobile. When you switch off your car, the app tags your existing GPS location, and an easy tap tons up a full-screen map showing where you’re in relation to your automobile. In my experience, accuracy of this feature has been superb, and method better than my common regimen of wandering with the parking area pressing the lock button on my vital fob over and over when I cannot discover my automobile.
Without an uncertainty, the geek-factor of the Automatic Smart Driving Assistant is off the charts. Having the ability to pack up an app and see precisely where your car is, precisely just how much each trip expense you in gas, and every little thing else feels futuristic– especially with how seamless this all is with the automatic Bluetooth connection and background data collection. It’s also by far the most user-friendly OBD-II gadget I’ve actually seen, because it parses the information the port can deliver in a really easy to comprehend format even for the least mechanically-minded motorists out there. The system also remains in beta screening, although it’s unclear whether any extra functions will be included before the official launch.
However, simply how helpful the Smart Driving Assistant in fact is in lowering fuel usage is debatable. It aims to save gas by decreasing the quantity of difficult braking you do, just how much of a lead foot you have, and how much you speed. But, do you really need a $70 gizmo to tell you that? Just simply making an effort to drive more slowly and conservatively, and both slowly accelerating and braking will have the exact same impact– all without spending $70.