viper

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.

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In a press release today, Directed Electronics announced that it has been working with Microsoft to bring its Viper SmartStart automotive app, which allows users to lock/unlock, and of course, start their vehicle via smartphone, to the Windows Phone platform "later in the year."  In conjunction with the announcement, Microsoft representatives demonstrated a beta version for those in attendance at the BUILD conference in Anaheim, CA. 

"We're very excited about partnering with Microsoft to extend Viper SmartStart products to the Windows Phone 7 platform," said Mike Simmons, Executive VP of Directed Electronics. "Our developers were able to quickly bring the app to Windows Phone 7 because they are so familiar with the Microsoft environment."

SmartStart, created by the same Viper brand of car alarms and other accessories, has a wide range of other smartphone-based apps for the car and home, though it's not clear from the press release if all of them are equally as close to arriving for WP7.  You can see a demo of the various functions on their website.

Aside from the clear convenience of what this app brings to users, what is even more interesting is what else Simmons had to say: "We look forward to collaborating with Microsoft in other areas, including jointly developing advanced solutions for the cloud connected car."  We have seen how Microsoft has been expanding and integrating SkyDrive into Mango, so could this mean such things as cloud-based music playback for the car?  This could take the Windows brand beyond just the PC\Phone\Gaming unification that we already know is coming.

Source: PRNewsWire

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