Nissan Developing iPhone App for Electric Car Owners

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2009-07-30 Email Print this article Print

Nissan has developed a prototype iPhone app for the electric car that it will unveil on Aug. 2. The Nissan application will offer convenience and energy efficiency, allowing drivers to remotely monitor the battery's charge, as well as turn on the air conditioner before they get behind the wheel.

The Apple iPhone is great for e-mailing, messaging, chatting, watching videos and staying in touch with colleagues and friends. Now, Nissan is looking to add "communicating with your car" to that list.
IDG news service reports that the Japanese car maker has developed a prototype iPhone application that allows electric car owners to dial into their vehicles to perform tasks such as checking the status of the lithium-ion battery.
A person shopping, for example, could know whether the battery was fully charged before returning to the vehicle. According to IDG, the vehicle can also send information to the iPhone regarding the amount of time required for a full charge and the approximate cost.
The app can also help drivers make the most efficient use of a full charge.
Instead of making a quick drain on the battery by getting behind the wheel of a roasting car and blasting the air conditioner-or likewise the heater on a cold day-the iPhone app can allow a driver to turn on the heater or air conditioner before arriving at the vehicle, allowing it to cool or warm gradually.
Additionally, turning on the air conditioner while the car is still at the charging station means energy for the air conditioner can come from the power source, instead of the battery.
The prototype is reportedly part of Nissan's research toward the 2010 debut of an electric car for use in Japan and North America. IDG reports the car will be unveiled on Aug. 2.
On Aug. 8, Nissan will officially open a new global headquarters in Yokohama. 

Michelle Maisto has been covering the enterprise mobility space for a decade, beginning with Knowledge Management, Field Force Automation and eCRM, and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Mobile Enterprise magazine. She earned an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and in her spare time obsesses about food. Her first book, The Gastronomy of Marriage, if forthcoming from Random House in September 2009.

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