Best Dash Cam Apps For Android and iOS Smartphones
Modern technology has touched virtually every aspect of life, including the way we drive. In today’s world, it’s almost unthinkable to drive around without a dashboard camera (dash cam).
While they offer a great and effective way to protect yourself and your vehicle, dash cams have price tags that may not be affordable to all.
That’s where dash apps come in handy.
What’s A Dash Cam App?
They are essentially smartphone applications that can do everything or most of what traditional dash cams do. You install the app on your smartphone and then fix the phone to a holder placed on your car’s dashboard or windshield. When you start driving the app will start the phone’s camera and record your trip.
To put it simply, dash cam apps convert your phone into a dash cam. They eliminate the need to buy an actual dash cam. Instead, you only use the app and your ordinary smartphone to get the job done. Their low price (some are free) makes them practical options for any motorist working with a shoestring budget.
Top Benefits of Dash Cam Apps
Dash cam apps are generally easy to download, install and use. They install on a smartphone just like any other mobile-based application. Perhaps the best part about that is that you won’t require any new technology, just your smartphone (and a holder). You won’t need to learn the workings of a new device or run connectivity wires.
Some dash cam apps take maximum advantage of the built-in features of a smartphone. For example, there are those that use the GPS feature to log your location, direction, and speed. Others use its Wi-Fi connectivity to upload your trip videos and images online at your request.
In terms of price, most dash cam apps are quite affordable. A good number of them are free, and those that require payment cost as little as $2 to $10. That makes a strong case for dash cam apps, especially if you don’t have the budget for a real dash cam.
Best Dash Cam Apps
Generally, your typical dash cam will perform a lot better than a dash cam app. Having said that, some apps compare almost favorably to conventional dash cams. They bring several special features to the table.
For example, besides the usual video and photo capturing, some units support auto-recording and loop recording, offer a wide field of view and use GPS to track your location, direction, and speed.
The features you will get depend on the app you choose, and as far as that goes, you’ve got tonnes of choices. While some only work on Android phones, others support iOS devices only. Still, some apps work on both sets of devices as well as Windows smartphones.
Best Dash Cam App for Android – AutoGuard
The AutoGuard app makes an ideal pick for anyone using an Android smartphone. This top-rated software is made by Hovan Yoo and comes in two versions, one free and the other one premium.
The main difference between the free and premium versions is that while the free version has in-app ads, the premium version doesn’t. But even with the free version, you won’t see ads during recording. The paid version costs a mere $2.99, so if you want to get rid of the ads altogether, you can consider making the purchase.
Other than those few differences, both versions record impressively quality videos and can be minimized to run in the background. As a dash cam app Android, AutoGuard runs on pretty much any Android device that has a forward-facing camera. Equally impressively, it has an auto-record feature that starts the camera as soon as you hook it to the holder.
Another Android Option
If you feel the AutoGuard falls short for one reason or another, you can consider using either the CamOnRoad app or CaroO app. The latter also comes in two versions, one free and the other one premium.
The premium version costs $4.50, so it’s slightly costlier than AutoGuard. But for the price, you get an app that can record and also tie to your OBD2 scanner. OBD2 is for diagnostics and checking the health of your vehicle.
On its part, CamOnRoad dash cam app android is completely free and comes with 2GB of cloud storage capacity. In addition to recording your trip, this app integrates with your phones GPS to log your GPS data like location, speed, direction and time.
Best Dash Cam App for iOS – CamOnRoad
A free to download and use app, CamOnRoad not only records trip footage but also tracks your journeys using your iPhone’s GPS. Each footage comes with a location, date and time stamp. Additionally, the app features a speed camera detector that notifies you when you’re approaching a speed camera.
The CamOnRoad app is highly rated because of its simplicity. In case you need a more sophisticated one perhaps the DriveRecorder app will impress you more. In addition to video recording, the app allows you to edit the videos and do cloud storage and sharing.
The DailyRoads Voyager is yet another dash cam app for iOS that performs comparatively well. It features a G-sensor, records in the background and can take still photos in preset time intervals.
Dash Cam Apps vs. Dash Cams
Which is better between using a dash cam app and installing a hardware dash cam? Well, dash cam apps do have their benefits, but they are extremely unreliable compared to traditional dash cams. Here are a few reasons why it makes more sense to install a fully-fledged dash cam:
- Dash cam apps rely on a smartphone’s camera and therefore have a smaller field of view.
- Smartphones are not built to record videos for many hours on end every day. Doing that can lead to overheating, damage and compromised functionality.
- Smartphones record low-quality footage at night compared to dash cams.
- Most dash cams offer more functional features, including G-sensor, motion detection, and night-mode recording.
- Ultimately, the drawbacks of using a dash cam app can render your footage unusable when you’re making a legal or insurance claim.
On the upside, dash cam apps are a lot cheaper and don’t require you to buy additional hardware apart from a holder.
However, while they may be affordable and convenient, you can’t fully trust their footage as much as that of a traditional dash cam.
If you’re on a budget, we’ve got you covered.