In previous posts, we have covered how to take to the road safely with a well-stocked emergency kit. However, as technology continues to make improvements in every arena of our lives, we would like to outline some gadgets that can improve your time behind the wheel as well.
What’s the Latest “Can’t Live Without?”
The following is a description of some items relatively new to the market that can enhance your driving safety and enjoyment. I think they’re pretty neat but, then again, I’ve been driving long enough that I’m still pretty enamored with electric windows and keyless entry.
It could be that this first gadget is the one to rule them all. After all, you can’t enjoy time behind the wheel if you can’t find your keys. With the Tile Mate Bluetooth Tracker attached to your keychain, an app on your phone can make your keys ring to give away their location. If your keys are out of range, the app also stores the last location where the tracker paired with your phone, so you know exactly where to start your search.
If you are among the millions of commuters who rely on navigation apps to get from point A to point B, this could be a worthwhile item to consider. Although very dangerous, I have been guilty of glancing down to my lap for the seat beside me to get a peek at the map on my phone’s screen. I understand that you may wonder why I don’t just hold the phone in my hand, but where am I gonna put my cheeseburger? With your smartphone mounted to your dash, the map remains in your line of sight for quick reference.
If you love your car but are jealous of the Bluetooth connectivity in your friend’s, this little number will let you keep up with the Joneses without restarting your car payments. If your car has an audio jack, this kit will allow you to make hands-free calls and play music from your smartphone.
This device pairs with a smartphone app and will allow you to know the location of your car at any time. There is a monthly fee involved to maintain the service, but it would act as cheap insurance if your car were to be stolen. The device may also come in handy for parents of teen drivers and, depending on the precision of the feed, great for a guy like me who can’t remember where he’s parked.
This last one is neither technologically advanced or even much of a gadget, but it’s one that you’ll wonder how you lived without. Known as the “Drop Stop,” this little molded plastic wonder is essentially a tray that slides in that space between your seat and the center console of your car. While you may not drop things down that slot is often as I do, you must realize what a frustration it is to retrieve things that have slipped into that chasm. With a Drop Stop, you’ll never lose your wallet, phone or french fries again.