Automatic Link is a product just launched by a US company called Automatic. This device connects to your vehicle on board computer port and, using Bluetooth, sends information to your Smartphone via an application. Automatic call it a Smart Driving Assistant, it is also referred to as the Automatic Driving Assistant, and it can help you save money by operating at optimum fuel efficiency.
Using Bluetooth 4.0 low energy technology and your Smartphone app the Driving Assistant monitors your driving style and gives soft tone audible cues to remind you when you are accelerating hard or braking sharply, it also tracks each and every journey accurately and gives you a weekly driving score so you can target your areas that require improvement.
The Automatic Link can also operate as a diagnostic tool, alerting you to engine warning lights and retrieving and displaying the meanings of the diagnostic codes. A useful aid for budgeting before booking in to your vehicle repair centre, if it is a simple fix you may even be able to clear those codes yourself.
Using GPS your Driving Assistant always knows where you have parked, so you never need to worry about finding your car in that enormous car park again!
Another feature is Crash Alert. For no charge the Automatic Link can call the emergency services and even send a text to a maximum of three preselected numbers in the unfortunate event of a crash. You will require GPS to be switched on and your Smartphone set up correctly to support this feature.
There is no monthly or annual subscription, you just pay for the Automatic Link accessory. You will also need a Smartphone and active data plan – the Automatic will use approx 5MB of data per month. No lengthy installation needed either, just a simple matter of plugging it in to your OBD port (on board diagnostic port) and the device will guide you through the set up process.
For more information go to www.automatic.com
You can view the Automatic Driving Assistant video here:
Currently only iOS is supported with an Android version to be released sometime in the autumn, that is good news for iOS and Android but disappointment for owners of Windows or Blackberry phones as there are no plans for these platforms to be supported at all.
Unfortunately at the moment the Automatic Link is only available in the United States but their website states “We’d like to support other countries in the future”. We contacted Automatic.com and asked for further information but unfortunately they were unable to provide us with any more detail on their plans for future expansion outside of the US, although they did suggest we monitor their website for updates.
We haven’t been able to test the Automatic Link yet due to lack of availability, but it looks impressive and the reviews support this “Automatic could do for driving what the iPod did for music” CNBC. Anything that helps to keep costs down and improve driving habits is a good thing so we must all hope that it will be made available on a more international basis in the near future.