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MacRumors
Jul 27, 2009, 02:05 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/07/27/nissan-developing-iphone-application-to-monitor-electric-car-battery-charge/)

PC World reports (http://www.pcworld.com/article/169078/nissan_dials_iphone_for_car_remote_control.html) that Nissan is developing an iPhone application that will be able to interface with the company's forthcoming electric car, allowing drivers to remotely view the charge state of their car's battery.Using it, owners will be able to monitor charging of their cars while away from the vehicles. The system could come in handy, for example, when cars are parked at public charging stations and owners want to fully charge the batteries before driving away.The application also allows for reporting of the internal temperature of the vehicle and allows users to activate the air conditioning system remotely so that the vehicle reaches a comfortable temperature by the time the driver arrives at his or her vehicle. The feature also allows the vehicle to take advantage of an external power source for air conditioning if the vehicle is charging at the time, shifting the power burden for the initial cooling off of the vehicle's internal battery.A driver returning to their car on a hot or cold day will typically blast the air conditioning or heater as soon as they start the engine and keep it going until a comfortable temperature is reached. That doesn't pose too much of a problem on a gasoline-powered car but on an electric car it contributes to battery drain, reducing the car's range.

However if the car is connected to a charger then it makes more sense to start-up the air conditioner or heater while still connected, making use of the electricity from the charging station, for those few initial minutes of high power use.Nissan's electric car will be unveiled next Sunday and is scheduled for a 2010 launch in North American and Japan.

Article Link: Nissan Developing iPhone Application to Monitor Electric Car Battery Charge (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/07/27/nissan-developing-iphone-application-to-monitor-electric-car-battery-charge/)



toughluck
Jul 27, 2009, 02:10 PM
Sounds like some james bond ****. i wonder if how you make it know its your car? or if it can be remotely accessed by someone who knows the cars serial or something. i hope they are making it safe even though the only thing i can think of someone doing is making the car really cold on a cold day... how scandalous!!!

SFStateStudent
Jul 27, 2009, 02:21 PM
Interesting app; now, if only I could get my hands on the Nissan electric car....:p:p:p

MacFly123
Jul 27, 2009, 02:23 PM
Sounds pretty cool. I am pretty excited to buy an electric car. There are only a couple things that bother me.

1) These cars are already capable of well beyond 100 miles and I want to see the range increase. I don't want to have to own a second gas car just to go on a trip or something.
2) Obama is probably going to tax every mile I drive and it might not even be much of an advantage to go electric versus gas as a result! :rolleyes:

iphones4evry1
Jul 27, 2009, 02:40 PM
This is awesome !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

Doctor Q
Jul 27, 2009, 02:40 PM
If my car is an electric appliance containing one or more computers, perhaps I should be able to ssh into it as well, so I can study all settings and property values.

djdole
Jul 27, 2009, 04:29 PM
Can someone just make a module (bluetooth, wireless or otherwise) that plugs into the diagnostics port under the dash of all cars to do this?

My (non Nissan) car would appreciate some iPhone lovin. :p

LanPhantom
Jul 27, 2009, 05:16 PM
If you have a hot enough day to generate that kind of heat, why not supply a solar panel in the roof to generate the power needed to run the A/C. Of course this wouldn't work on an overcast cold day to heat it up, but most people can deal with cold much easier then a hot steamy car. Also, I don't see electric cars making it to very cold climates until they can solve the degradation of batteries in very cold climates.

--LanPhantom

mattwolfmatt
Jul 27, 2009, 05:43 PM
I love how the article says "vehicleS" like we all will own 2 or 3 of them. ;)

But kind of thing is future of integration of all these products. Pretty awesome.

eawmp1
Jul 27, 2009, 06:27 PM
I wonder how quickly it will suck down the 3GS battery :rolleyes:

wepew
Jul 27, 2009, 07:33 PM
Nissan has signed on to make cars for Better Place. I bet this car will eventually be a part of that. iPhone integration will make the Better Place idea even better. Check out betterplace.com

mattwolfmatt
Jul 27, 2009, 07:44 PM
Nissan has signed on to make cars for Better Place. I bet this car will eventually be a part of that. iPhone integration will make the Better Place idea even better. Check out betterplace.com

Hey wepew, are you the Director of Nissan's Marketing, by any chance?

Mr. Zorg
Jul 27, 2009, 10:21 PM
This sure sounds cool, but if they want the app to be available when the cars debut, they'd better get it submitted now... :eek:

mattster16
Jul 27, 2009, 10:42 PM
If you have a hot enough day to generate that kind of heat, why not supply a solar panel in the roof to generate the power needed to run the A/C. Of course this wouldn't work on an overcast cold day to heat it up, but most people can deal with cold much easier then a hot steamy car. Also, I don't see electric cars making it to very cold climates until they can solve the degradation of batteries in very cold climates.

--LanPhantom

You'd never be able to generate enough power to run an AC unit that way. Not enough surface area for solar panels available. AC takes a lot of energy.

I can't say this for sure without doing the calculations, but based on what I know that is my opinion.

Look at the new Prius' solar panels, they power a small little fan to vent the car. AC requires much more power than that.

iphoneslutz
Jul 27, 2009, 11:30 PM
WOW! Can it do my laundry too? ;) Seriously, this would seem to be a heavy duty application, I wonder how much it would cost and would it be available in the app store as opposed to getting a code from a dealership? I guess we have to wait until next year to find out. Maybe by that time more of us will have electric cars to drive so we can actually utilize this app!

spillproof
Jul 28, 2009, 12:03 AM
Sound awesome. But, just wait for people to download it and give it one star because they don't understand how to work the game.

iphoneblack
Jul 28, 2009, 01:10 AM
i wish honda or toyota will do that...
i doubt I will get nissan :(

sfger
Jul 28, 2009, 02:49 AM
It's a cool application. I will get one for my nissan.

VelfarreClubber
Jul 28, 2009, 03:56 AM
yup theres an app for that :apple:

sure makes you feel like james bond minus the aston martin

RaZaK
Jul 28, 2009, 09:41 AM
how about improving the bluetooth radios in your cars so that people can hear me clearly when i'm using the iPhone.

Thanks :rolleyes:

wepew
Jul 28, 2009, 10:07 AM
Hey wepew, are you the Director of Nissan's Marketing, by any chance?

no, but it did sort of sound like that didn't it? :p


i am just really excited about Better Place and their battery swap technology. the best part is that they will subsidize the cars just like cell phone companies subsidize the cost of phones.

Now I sound like I'm advertising for Better Place... oh well.;)

theloon
Jul 28, 2009, 02:10 PM
Buy a green car, but still want the aircon turned up and the car cooled/heated before you drive!!..... Genius

I'll just continue to hit remote start on my Jeep, rather than pretend to be green and get a power station to burn me some coal instead...

mattster16
Jul 28, 2009, 03:22 PM
I'll just continue to hit remote start on my Jeep, rather than pretend to be green and get a power station to burn me some coal instead...

I always hate when this argument is made. A coal power station is more efficient than an internal combustion engine. An internal combustion engine averages about 18-20% efficiency. A coal power plant is in the 30-35% range. This means less resources are used and less pollution produced for the same amount of power. This doesn't take into account mining/drilling, refining, transportation, transmission losses, etc. The power plant still, however, comes out ahead. Also keep in mind that at least SOME of that electricity is coming from hydro, wind, solar. As more electricity is generated from renewables an electric car will become more environmentally friendly, without have to modify or replace the vehicle (using even more resources in the process).

We aren't going to have a perfectly 100% renewable (green) solution for a long while still. Don't berate those who at least try to be somewhat more green in the interim. It's still a step in the right direction.

I do this this is a sweet app and concept though. It's a great idea and I'd imagine even more functionality will be added and more companies will adopt this.

notjustjay
Jul 30, 2009, 02:45 PM
no, but it did sort of sound like that didn't it? :p


i am just really excited about Better Place and their battery swap technology. the best part is that they will subsidize the cars just like cell phone companies subsidize the cost of phones.

Now I sound like I'm advertising for Better Place... oh well.;)

By remarkable coincidence, today a coworker left a pile of WIRED magazines in the lunchroom, and one of them contained an article about Better Place. I had never heard of this before, but after reading the article and doing some Googling, I'm excited. I hope this venture works out.

Why don't I drive a hybrid already? Because they cost $5,000 to $7,000 more than a conventional car, and for that extra money I'm buying a massive battery that's a huge unknown -- how long will it last, what will happen to my driving ability as it loses charge, how much is it going to cost me to replace years down the road?

Better Place proposes that the battery is not going to be my concern at all -- it will be owned by the grid operator. That means it's not my responsibility to buy the battery in the first place -- so the cost of the electric car is very comparable to the gas one -- and I won't have to worry about long-term usage either, because I'll be swapping my battery for other batteries over the life of the car. I'll let the battery station take care of those details -- a win for them, too, because they can take their time to charge the batteries using green technologies like solar and wind, they can replace failing cells, and over time as battery technologies improve, they can replace old packs with newer technology. It's a lot like buying propane for your BBQ -- you swap out your empty tank for a full one, and you don't worry about the tank itself, just the energy stored within it.

The company proposes to sell subscription packages just like cell phones. You pay for miles like you pay for minutes -- in theory they could do monthly, pay-as-you-go, unlimited flat rate -- and they propose that it will be a lot cheaper than gas in the long run. This also opens up the possibility of carrier subsidies -- maybe your electric car is free if you subscribe to the unlimited miles plan!

Obviously there is a long way to go -- in addition to getting car companies to sign on, they need thousands of station operators to build battery-swap/charge stations, they need to develop a national standard for batteries, chargers -- but they seem to be gaining headway. They also need other companies to sign on and inter-operate, just like we have multiple cell phone carriers with roaming agreements, so nobody feels like they're buying into a single proprietary system that would be useless if one carrier fails.

Would I pay less up front, for a greener car, and then sign onto a subscription plan that costs me less to operate than what I'm paying now for gas? Assuming the infrastructure was in place to let me go 90% of wherever I need to go, heck yes! I could keep my existing car or take public transit for those remote/obscure places that wouldn't be reachable by an electric charging grid.

(not a marketing guy, either... just fascinated with this possibility!)

kainjow
Aug 3, 2009, 12:38 PM
Nissan unveils 'Leaf' electric hatchback (http://money.cnn.com/2009/08/02/autos/nissan.electric.reut/index.htm)

It'd be interesting to see how smooth this drives.

Plus, if the iPhone app is eventually released, will it use the Dock connector or Bluetooth? I don't want a proprietary cable in my car again.

mackiwilad
Aug 5, 2009, 03:22 AM
I always hate when this argument is made. A coal power station is more efficient than an internal combustion engine. An internal combustion engine averages about 18-20% efficiency. A coal power plant is in the 30-35% range. This means less resources are used and less pollution produced for the same amount of power. This doesn't take into account mining/drilling, refining, transportation, transmission losses, etc. The power plant still, however, comes out ahead. Also keep in mind that at least SOME of that electricity is coming from hydro, wind, solar. As more electricity is generated from renewables an electric car will become more environmentally friendly, without have to modify or replace the vehicle (using even more resources in the process).

We aren't going to have a perfectly 100% renewable (green) solution for a long while still. Don't berate those who at least try to be somewhat more green in the interim. It's still a step in the right direction.

Actually not all countries rely on coal etc for electricity. My country for instance uses Hydro for all our energy needs. No greenhouse gases there!
If you read about Better Place you will see that they heavily promote using energy created in a greener way with credits etc. One of the countries they have signed on is going to power their Better Place grid using surplus wind power - so progress is possible NOW, not in some distant future.

By remarkable coincidence, today a coworker left a pile of WIRED magazines in the lunchroom, and one of them contained an article about Better Place. I had never heard of this before, but after reading the article and doing some Googling, I'm excited. I hope this venture works out.

Would I pay less up front, for a greener car, and then sign onto a subscription plan that costs me less to operate than what I'm paying now for gas? Assuming the infrastructure was in place to let me go 90% of wherever I need to go, heck yes! I could keep my existing car or take public transit for those remote/obscure places that wouldn't be reachable by an electric charging grid.

(not a marketing guy, either... just fascinated with this possibility!)
I'm not a Marketing guy either, but the idea really excites me - imagine being able to breathe properly next to a motorway, or being able to tell the Gulf States they can shove their product... ah to dream...

satcomer
Aug 5, 2009, 02:40 PM
I would drive an electric car but I live in an apartment so I guess I am out of luck trying to be green.

twoodcc
Aug 5, 2009, 05:11 PM
now this sounds cool. looking forward to more details about this

savar
Aug 6, 2009, 01:49 PM
Can someone just make a module (bluetooth, wireless or otherwise) that plugs into the diagnostics port under the dash of all cars to do this?

My (non Nissan) car would appreciate some iPhone lovin. :p

There's already an app that does this. Not over USB but over Wifi.

I found this out because I was interested in building my own app to do it, but they beat me to the punch and their app works really well. Can't remember the name.

The app itself is expensive ($50 or so?), but the wifi-to-ODB dongle is really expensive ($200 or so).

I always hate when this argument is made. A coal power station is more efficient than an internal combustion engine. An internal combustion engine averages about 18-20% efficiency.

Moreover, the internal combustion engine has more moving parts, more complexity, wears out more quickly, requires more oil, and weighs more. The additional engine weight requires the entire car to be built heavier than it needs to be to provide support and balance.

I can't WAIT to buy an all electric car. Near silence. No gear shifting. No exhaust. I just wish they were a little cheaper/more practical right now.

Edit: In fact, there are some cars now that have a diesel generator linked to an electric motor. Why? Because the friction on the camshaft and work done against the spring loaded valve heads use up more energy than is lost in the gas-electric conversion.