Today we’re going to discuss a whole range of apps for cars. Probably you’ve read a summary from the Mobile World Congress last year where there was discussed how many cool cars were there and how few apps for them. Two years ago Apple released Apple CarPlay that was later followed by Android Auto launched by Google. 

So, let’s explore what’s happened since that moment and what’s that supercar app is. Here are what people in the industry shared with us:

1. Cars are getting connected

Today many car manufacturers include WiFis and SIMs by companies such as Novero in their premium-class models. This is awesome as the mobile signal and as a result data connections are much better with an external antenna that provides better coverage. That also means that your car is permanently connected and can deliver information to the driver and owner even when there is nobody in the car. On the other side, your car will need an extra mobile connection, that’s why many car buyers prefer not to activate it.r

2. Navigation and Control

Manufacturers know that the number one priority in cars and driving is safety. That is the main reason why they always try to include voice control along with touch screens to make it easier to navigate and receive information. But that’s a fact that the car voice control systems are mostly bad as well as navigation and touch screens lack the quality of the Samsung Galaxy or iPhone devices. This is certainly a barrier to uptake.

2018 Update There are already augmented reality navigation maps, user cases, and solutions. You can check our articles and cases.

3. Proprietary Car Apps & Android Auto + Apple Carplay

Speaking about the barriers to uptake, it is also worthy to note the very little amount of proprietary smart car systems. The majority of app developers just can’t afford to invest in one more platform like QNX. This is the main reason why car manufacturers preferred to launch Android Auto and Apple CarPlay although with common restrictions. Android and iOS developers don’t have any access to the information from the car but can only use the audio and navigation systems of the car. Moreover, Google and Apple ask for additional approval for car apps.

Well, if you need access to speed, fuel consumption, last service, and other items, the only way you can use to do it is through proprietary platforms designed by manufacturers. It’s even more interesting to observe that there was almost nothing said about the QNX car application development platform in the previous year.

4. Security

Another huge barrier for a car app after safety is security. Just imagine what will happen if for example someone will hack let’s say 15,000 cars and will do an override of the autopilot to deactivate or accelerate the breaks. This is the biggest reason why access to car features is limited for extra apps.

5. What Apps are Available Today?

apps cars available

Currently, Apple offers Phone, Maps, iMessage along with different music apps like iHeartRadio, Podcasts, and Spotify. Although the portfolio is a little bit limited now, it’s still growing. On the other hand, the Android portfolio is almost the same with similar functionality (media) enabled but with more applications, as they’ve been less restrictive with who they approve.

Besides that, you can enjoy the proprietary car platform apps that have specific features like weather, navigation, and media, and that are pretty much it.

Probably the most useful and sophisticated apps can be found in such car information start-up manufacturers as Mojio, Automatic, Truvulo, and Dash. The connection is performed through an open standard plug, which is located underneath the wheel with the help of their own or 3rd party hardware and offers car information about speed, consumption, the health of the car, driving behavior, and more. This hardware can then be used to provide applications that track safe driving (usually use by teenagers), car location, and fuel consumption.

6. What Will Be the Killer App of the Future?

There were big debates among the industry players and the biggest challenge discussed was the huge difference between what want consumers and what want manufacturers. It is obvious that manufacturers ask for providing more data from the cars, such as driving behavior, utilization, fuel consumption, safety, collecting road information, location tracking, and other data that can be used to improve the service, cars and sell data to third parties.

On the other hand, the consumers have to become incentivized to provide information about them and no one of the existing car applications is good for that. The type of apps the consumers are seeking today involve music, navigation, traffic information (including police controls), car safety for their driving teen-children, service and maintenance (1 time per year), weather broadcast, and of course keeping the car secure.

Bonus: Top 8 Free Car Information Apps

As it was told earlier, car applications represent virtual information hubs, which offer details on new models of cars, cars for sale, parking opportunities, and possible ways to save on car use.

We’ve decided to list the most popular and absolutely FREE car applications you may download and install right now.

Parking Panda

Parking Panda is extremely helpful for anyone seeking parking lots in the largest metro areas, where parking usually becomes a real challenge.


This app will help drivers to find used cars within 200 miles of their location


Parkopedia is another great app that provides you with detailed information about parking areas all around the world.

True Car

This app collects information that can be useful for those users interested in buying a new car for the best price.


Visit each time you need to search and reserve a guaranteed parking lot before you reach the destination.


This is just an awesome online resource for any driver


Here you can get detailed information about auto body repair estimated by the photo.


Looking for a new car for the best price? Be sure to get exactly what you want with CarWoo.

Well, what’s the killer car app for your Android or iPhone? Perhaps these are Google self-driving cars, after all, so we can spend our time blogging and not be bothered by the driving process at all?

See also: How to Make a Taxi App like Uber?