Smartfuel, a new free iOS app from Iridium Development, promises to find the cheapest gas along your route--and it looks to do so without getting you beaten up or robbed.
SmartFuel uses an in-app mapping system developed by Navteq that allows drivers to search the best prices at stations up to 100 miles ahead without changing the driver's chosen route. The software recalculates possible gas stations and their prices as the route changes.
Thisto find the cheapest gas in the vicinity, but SmartFuel takes the unique step of considering the cleanliness of the filling station and the safety of the surrounding neighborhood. Users can rate and review any station they visit and leave notes on the quality of life around the 87 octane.
It's an interesting additional tool in the gas price chase because it involves the potentially controversial step of evaluating neighborhoods. Big-city folks know supply and demand keeps the gas prices a bit cheaper in neighborhoods where incomes are statistically lower and crime rates are higher.
So, SmartFuel users are left to ask how badly they want cheap gas. Are you willing to brave riskier areas to save a few pennies a gallon?
SmartFuel provides up-to-the-minute prices from the Oil Price Information Service (and I didn't know there was such a service, either). OPIS gives SmartFuel access to gas prices at more than 125,000 stations across the country and relays up to 1.5 million price updates each day.