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Tag Archives: car

GPS Angel Helps You Avoid Red Light Cameras And Speed Traps

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By Chris Scott Barr

For years people have been using radar detectors in their cars to avoid expensive speeding tickets. Those are great, but generally won’t protect you from automatic speed cameras and red light cameras. What you need is something with a database of current locations that house such cameras. For that, GPS Angel has released their new V4 Red Light Camera and Speed Camera detector.

The new GPS Angel device uses SiRF Star III GPS technology to pinpoint your location and run it against a database of known speed trap and red light camera locations. It then uses visual and audible alerts to warn you of them. You can even program it to alert you when you’re speeding through school zones, playgrounds and other high-risk areas where you can get penalized further for speeding.

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Swivel Car Tray Adds Some Class To Your Drive-Thru Meal

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By Chris Scott Barr

Do you do a lot of eating in your car? If so, then you probably grow tired of digging around in the McDonald’s bag for those last few french fries. What you need is some sort of handy tray to set all of your food on before driving away. Well my friend, such a tray exists and it’s called the Swivel Car Tray.

First, I would never trust this thing to hold a juice box in place, regardless of what you see in the picture. Other than that, it probably is rather handy to have around, even if it does look a bit silly. I suppose you could simply take it out of the cup holder when you aren’t planning on stuffing your face on the freeway. If this sounds like something you could use, then pick one up for just $11.

[ CollectionsEtc ] VIA [ CrunchGear ]

Ford Sync Adds Wireless Hotspot Functionality Next Year

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By Chris Scott Barr

Having a 3G card can come in handy when one is traveling long distances. I know that mine came in handy this past summer when I drove across the country and back. Of course if you’re in a car with multiple people with laptops, wouldn’t it be nice to share that wonderful internet? Ford thinks so, and is planning on making that an option with their next generation of Sync.

With the next version of Sync, Ford will allow you to plug in a 3G card (via USB) and have it broadcast the signal via Wi-Fi. Since you won’t want outsiders leeching off of your connection, you’ll have access to the same security measures as any other wireless router. As an added level of security, all new wireless devices must first be confirmed by the driver before they are allowed on the network. Look for this feature to debut on Ford cars sometime next year.

[ Ford ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

Chevy Volt Owners Will Be Able To Interact With Their Car Via iPhone, Blackberry

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By Chris Scott Barr

Next year those people anxiously awaiting the new Chevy Volt will finally get their hands on it (barring any delays). In addition to having an awesome electric car, they’ll also have a cool way to interact with it remotely. That’s right, iPhone and Blackberry users will have the ability to link up with their car using their phone of choice.

So far it seems that the only current features will be controlling when the Volt is charged, and being able to tell just how much juice it has at any given time. Seeing that they still have a long time before the car is due out (currently late 2010), we should hopefully see more features added to the phone apps.

[ GM-Volt ] VIA [ Dvice ]

OhGizmo! Review – Alpine iDA-X305

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By Chris Scott Barr

When it comes to listening to music in your car, you have a lot of options these days. Satellite radio, AM/FM stations, CDs, and MP3 players can all give you access to your favorite tunes. With the popularity of the iPhone, many people like to utilize it for their in-car listening pleasure. Unfortunately if you’re looking for a truly integrated solution, you’ll find that you have few options.

I personally use a Sony head unit which features an iPod adapter. In order to get it to play nicely with my iPhone, I rely on a special adapter from Scoche which does the trick. It gets the job done, so long as you aren’t searching out specific songs or artists to listen to. The controls are clunky at best and barely functional at worst. Most of the time I have to unplug the iPhone, find the artist or song I was looking for, start a song, then plug it back in. I finally became fed up with it, and have started on a search for a better solution. Apline was kind enough to endulge me by letting us test out their iDA-X305 stereo. Read on for my full review.

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GM Brings WiFi Access To Your New Vehicle

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By Chris Scott Barr

There are some people in this world that need to be connected to the internet at all times. Sure, I’m an internet junkie, but I don’t think I’d ever go so far as to install a permanent WiFi hotspot in my car. GM announced that they will soon start offering Autonet, an always-on wireless internet solution for your car.

The device can be installed in your new van, SUV, truck or crossover starting later this month. Installation will set you back $499, while service is going to cost $29 a month with a 1GB cap. There is also a 5GB package, though no price was listed. The WiFi signal will reach up to 150 feet away, so you won’t be limited to using it just in your car. Great, now kids can check their Facebook and watch YouTube on long car rides. All my brother and I had was one GameBoy to fight over.

[ GM ] VI A [ CrunchGear ]

Use Your iPhone To Start Your Car

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By Chris Scott Barr

Keys are one of those objects that seems almost archaic when you think about them. We have so many technologies at our disposal, you have to wonder why we rely on these so heavily. If you don’t have a car with a fancy keyless setup, you can now add a Viper StartSmart system that will let you control your car from your iPhone.

The new StartSmart System won’t have you driving your car from an iPhone, but you can do a host of other functions:

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Get A PS2 Installed In Your Minivan

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By Chris Scott Barr

Long car trips aren’t much fun, especially if you’re a kid. That was true enough at least when I was young, as we only had books, Walkmans and maybe a Gameboy to keep us occupied. Nowadays kids get in-car DVD players, laptops, iPods and DS/PSP’s. Well now they can even get a PS2 installed in their parents minivan.

Sure, many in-car DVD players give you the option to hook a gaming console to them, but then you have to mess with running the cables, and powering the stupid thing. Audiovox has crafted an overhead console which sports a 10.2-inch LCD screen and  a PS2. The PS2 is in a custom housing, so they didn’t just cram a Slim into a fancy compartment. The system comes with a pair of controllers, along with two games (Rachet & Clank: Going Commando and Hot Shots Golf 3). The real kicker here is the $950 price tag. If it were a PS3 or Xbox 360, I’d still say that was too much money. However, since we’re talking about a 9-year-old console it’s just ludicrous.

[ Audiovox ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

XM SkyDock Turns Your iPhone Into A Satellite Radio Receiver

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By Chris Scott Barr

I haven’t jumped on the satellite radio bandwagon, mostly because I’m happy with just hooking up my iPhone and listening to my collection of tunes. However, for those that aren’t content to listen to their iTunes collection in the car, you might be interested in this XM SkyDock, which turns your iPhone into a Sirius XM Radio tuner.

This, combined with the corresponding app, gives you full access to all of Sirius XM’s lineup (unlike the regular Sirius XM app, which omits several key stations) from your iPhone. The SkyDock plugs into your car’s cigarette adapter to not only provide power to your phone, but it also allows it to transmit audio to your stereo through the car’s electrical system. This will work when playing music through iTunes, as well as Sirius XM. Another cool feature is iTunes tagging, which allows you to tag a song you hear so that it can be purchased through iTunes later.

The kit will be available sometime in the fall for $120, plus the cost of a Sirius XM subscription. Any iPhone or iPod Touch running 3.0 software will work.

[ Sirius ] VIA [ Cnet ]