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OBD apps: using your smartphone to tune your car

A lot has been happening in the car tuning world lately. One of the most prominent developments which car owners can tune their car, has been taking place on the digital field. Using a simple dongle connection to the on-board diagnosis (OBD) of your car, your phone can easily be turned into the most powerful car tuning tool you have ever held in your hands. In an instant, the car user is granted access to the most intimate secrets of his car.

Car data
Every car shares information with its driver. At all times, we get to see the speed with which we drive, the engine revolutions, and the temperature of the engine. But modern cars continually measure a lot more things than you might think. A diagnostic system (OBD) is constantly running, and measuring everything from torque and engine power to braking power and fuel flow. Highly useful information if you want to improve your ride in any way! The information is already there: all you must do is connect your phone.

Advanced data collection by German car brand

OBD apps: improving all the time

Apps that allow you to look into the performance and fuel use of your car have been improving over the last few years. Well known paid apps like Dash Command offer a clear and accurate picture of what your car is up to, but more and more free apps are starting to compete. The software plugs straight into the command center of your car, and gives a visually comprehensive overview of what is happening inside your car. You can even view what is happening in real-time, as you are driving! Most apps also boast more advanced options, like tracking a braking pattern or logging acceleration. This is especially useful if you are looking to improve your driving, or if you want to know what part of the car needs to be tuned next.

Getting started with an OBD-dongle

Connecting to the OBD of your car might seem tricky – but in fact, it is not. All you need is a simple dongle device, which can connect the car computer to the app on your phone. These dongles are widely available and reasonably priced. The systems will work on all cars that have a modern OBD system, which has been the standard since 1996. Chances are, soon you’ll be able to read your car data like a professional!

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