Published: August 14, 2014 | United States
The Dash smart driving assistant that made its debut earlier this year on Android has launched on iPhone. The Dash app, which is backed by Techstars New York, connects to any ODB-II dongle that you can get for your car (most cars made since 1996 should have one that’s easily accessible) providing feedback about your trips like fuel efficiency and even info about vehicle diagnostics.
The on-board diagnostic (ODB) port on modern cars is something that is typically only used by mechanics, mainly when they’re trying to determine the reason behind warning lights that signal potential engine or other car problems. Dash plugs into that available data trove, connecting to an ODB dongle that has Bluetooth connectivity (which are available on Amazon starting as low as $10).
Dash also rates your trips, based on fuel efficiency and measures of driving skill, including how aggressively you’re braking. After each trip, the app will provide feedback about how you could’ve improved your score, which means increasing the energy and cost efficiency of your driving, and prolonging the life of your brake pads and engine parts. Other features include locating nearby gas stations and prices, as well as road emergencies and mechanics, all without having to leave the app.
Dash is optimized for U.S. use as of right now, and available only on the U.S. iTunes Store, but it’s a great (and free) solution for those looking to keep better track of their driving habits, either in order to optimize their automotive experience or just for curiosity’s sake.