Have a car? Ever wanted a remote start system for it? If so, we may have just found the missing link to get you to buy one as the official Viper SmartStart app for Windows Phone 7.x and 8 has become available in the Store.
The Viper SmartStart is a two part system that relies on hardware (the remote start equipment in your car) and the software (an app on your smartphone), creating a powerful combination to make your car “smart” for 2013 (or make it possessed like Christine, whichever). The hardware isn’t cheap, starting at $399 for the basic system plus installation, with optional addon modules like GPS, Bluetooth and security to further enhancement.
In short, with the basic system you can push a virtual button on your smartphone to start your car, lock the doors or pop the trunk. For some of us up north, this is a nice feature for the winter. Down south, it's a great way to cool down your car before you get in. Throw in the alarm system and you can enable/disable that, use the panic button and more. Have more money to spend? Toss on the GPS system to enable social-media checkins (seriously), lockdown alert (tells you if your car moved), vehicle location, speed and more.
On board features:
- Free app includes SmartPark parking spot finder, parking meter reminder, and guest membership in Viper Motor Club.
- When combined with a Viper SmartStart module in your car, you can start, lock and unlock your car from virtually anywhere. Receive push or text notification if your car alarm goes off (when installed with a Viper security system). You can even control your compatible home security system in one convenient, easy to use app.
- When combined with a Viper SmartStart GPS module, you can also locate your car, share activity on Facebook (because your car needs friends, too), and set safety notifications if your car is speeding or goes where it's not supposed to go.
It’s no doubt a pretty crazy system, one that we would really not have considered before today. But now with an official Windows Phone app, which suspiciously looks iPhone-ish, we’re reconsidering.
An initial review of the app is highly positive though there is room for improvement. For instance there is no doublewide tile with status information nor can you pin the remote-start button to your Start screen. That latter one seems like a real missed opportunity, though we suppose being a v1.0 of the app, we could see some forthcoming updates to address these shortcomings.
Viper SmartStart is compatible with Windows Phone 7.x and 8. Thanks, Geri G., for the tip!