Connected car app updates: Audiobooks CarPlay, Automatic Apple Watch, VZW Lyft, Plugshare, My Carfax & ChildSafe

screen568x568There are many ways to connect your car through apps. When the Apple Watch was launched there were several Apple Watch apps and more Apple Watch apps released this week. App-makers have been updating their connected car apps for CarPlay and more features. Here are the latest automotive app updates from Audiobooks, Automatic, Lyft (discounts for Verizon), Plugshare, ChildSafe and My CarFax.

CarPlay Update: Audiobooks CarPlay Optimized announced a new version of its app for iOS with iOS 8.3 conventions that is optimized for CarPlay, making it the only audiobook app available for Apple’s new in-car platform. streaming service also works several proprietary in-car entertainment systems.

Apple Watch Update: Automatic

automaticwatchAutomatic is now offering an Apple Watch App for iPhone. The Apple Watch app allows for car parked location finding and trip tagging for business or personal from the watch. The update 2.7.0, is optimized for iPhone 5 and does not yet currently work with iPhone 6/6+.

Get a Cheaper Lyft from Verizon Wireless

LYFTappVerizon Wireless and Lyft ride sharing app announced a partnership. Starting on Monday, May 11th, Verizon will provide a monthly access discount for drivers through Lyft’s Accelerate Premier Driver Rewards program. Starting today, select new Verizon Android smartphones will be pre-loaded with the Lyft app, so passengers can easily request a ride as soon as they activate their devices. Verizon has been recently slashing prices and is now offering  10GB of data for $80 monthly account access, plus pay $15 monthly line access per smartphone on Edge.

Plugshare Update Offers Trip Planner

screen322x572Plugshare has updated its crowd-sourced EV charging app for iPhone with a trip planner, showing charging stations within five miles of the route. Other new features include a local charging activity viewer to see if a charger is in use, bookmarks, messaging to other drivers, leaderboards, a customizable user profile, and new search options. Users can now specify specific plug types or charging networks in their search for charging options.

If You Can’t Recall if Your Car is Recalled or Needs Service

myCarfaxeAutomotive recalls are constantly in the news,  you could miss announcements regarding your car or forget maintenance services. The My Carfax app can track your car’s recalls with just the license plate number. It also sends reminders for future maintenance checks and gives locations of repair shops nearby. New in version 2.12 are mobile push notifications for when inspections are due or new services are reported.

Summer Heat Reminder: Don’t Forget the Baby App

childsafeappscreeSummer is coming when it gets very hot in cars. Last, year there were many child disasters from kids being left in cars. New safety seats have the kids facing backwards. The ChildSafe App, available in the Apple App Store and for Android costs  $.99. The app can be used to remind parents that their children are in the back seat of a car. Currently, reminders can be set up for scheduled times or routes. A Bluetooth device is coming soon.

The Forgetting-Baby Syndrome problem began getting worse when car seats for safety seats were placed in the back seat in 1998 says Morris Franco, media outreach for Kars4Kids.

Other recent connected car apps are:

  • Volkswagen announced that VW’s Car-Net platform will be compatible with the Apple Watch.
  • TomTom MyDrive allows drivers to send destinations to their TomTom GO from their smartphone.
  • BMW and MINI have added more iPhone iOS apps, including Life 360, Spotify, Deezer, Rhapsody, Audible GoPro and more.

1 thought on “Connected car app updates: Audiobooks CarPlay, Automatic Apple Watch, VZW Lyft, Plugshare, My Carfax & ChildSafe”

  1. Thanks for sharing Lynn! Im a huge fan of audiobooks so I will be looking into the watch for sure.

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