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Nissan Leaf – Click above for high-res image gallery

If the vision of James Bond driving the BMW 750il remotely via his cell phone in Tomorrow Never Dies is your idea of a perfect app for a vehicle, than the setup for the Nissan Leaf is sure to disappoint. The Leaf's iPhone app is quite limited and remotely driving the car is certainly not one of the options. In fact, the app does so little that it seems out of place compared to the technological marvels that can be found within the Leaf.

Alright, here's what the iPhone Leaf app can do. It can send a message to the vehicle to either warm or cool the interior to a preset temperature ahead of time, and it can tell you how full the battery is at any given time. And that's it. Nothing special if you ask us... and we're hoping that more functions are added in soon, but for now preset temps and charge status is all you get. Disappointed? We certainly are; we had visions of remotely piloting the Leaf ala James Bond dancing through our heads, only to find out our dreams have been hopelessly dashed. Oh well.



[Source: Nissan-Leaf | Image: Yutaka Tsutano – C.C. License 2.0]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 36 Comments
      • 4 Months Ago
      Oh yeah and if it helped me wash the car and made me coffee in the morning that would be cool too! More importantly when is the Android app coming out?
        • 4 Months Ago
        Google just anounced Android 2.2 at Google IO ( http://www.youtube.com/googledevelopers#p/c/CF01A789E62F2454 ), and I think it would be a perfect OS for this car, you can remotely (from any web conencted computer) instruct the remote device to download some music, or open the navigation to some destination, or get some app from Android Market (could be a phone or could be the car if it had Android 2.2 on car computer).

        Anyway let's hope Nissan gives Android the same atention as this iPhony app beacuse Android is almost in every brand now.

        And the Android Notification System is way ahead of any other phone system.

        Not to mention the wifi portable hot-spot (aka wireless thetering) that comes standard in Android 2.2 and it can give wireless to all your devices in the range.

        This would be perfect for all devices inside the car that would require internet access (phones, iPads, laptops).

        And did you see the music app (also demoed at Google IO) that can play over the internet all your music collection from your home computer's Hard Disk, so you don't need to carry disks or any storage media, yet can access virtually unlimited storage ;)

        That is the Future Now done with actual technology, so why do we have to wait for next version of Nissan Leaf to do this? or will we we be able to just update the OS inside Leaf's computer with Android 3.0 ?;)

        Come on Nissan, give that big gadget (Leaf) a new life with Android OS onboard ;)
        I'm sure it would keep up ahead of all other car computer systems with new features in each Android version coming out every 6 months or so.
      • 4 Months Ago
      I prefer Batman commands, where I just talk and tell it to, locate and pick me up, seal yourself up in armor and drop out some mines and explode surrounding areas. No iphone is needed, I speak into my wrist.
      • 4 Months Ago
      Here's a question to you all:

      What do YOU want in an iPhone app for the Leaf?

      (assuming the 3 functions already included aren't enough)
        • 4 Months Ago
        As someone already mentioned:
        The ability to download tunes to the car.
        The ability to download driving directions to the nav system.
        Door lock and unlock (and activate/deactivate car alarm)
        The ability to upload usage and performance data (for those who obsess over such things)

        That about covers it. Of course, when I log off I'll probably think of more...
      • 4 Months Ago
      Why don't they open up the specifications of the wireless interface to the car and open-source that iPhone app. In the end, Nissan is not in the software business, so why not use the creativity and productivity of an enthused community. Google's Android does it?
      Only constraint: make sure you secure the channel to the car and use rigid authentification. But that's been solved by the IT industry in 100 different flavours, strengths and levels of comfort.
      • 4 Months Ago
      This is actually very useful because if you have charging facilities at work, you can see the battery status and work out if it's worth staying an extra 30 minutes at the end of the day. This is especially useful for me because the elevator is programmed after-hours to only go down, not up (unless you have a key), so once you leave there's no coming back.

      It's also useful to set it to pre-heat / cool the car while the charger is still plugged in, thus not draining the precious battery.
      • 4 Months Ago
      Lame or Lamest ?

      Do you want to write about Leaf that we really want to know ? Here is a list
      - How does the priority work ? What exactly is the sequence of booking/pre-ordering/ordering/buying ?
      - Will we get enough time to negotiate the price with various dealers and not lose our place in the queue ?
      - When will the electrcians come to inspect & give us an estimate for EVSE ?
      - How does ordering work along with Project EV ?
      - Are they getting a Green Leaf ?
        • 4 Months Ago
        @GoodCheer : thanks for the "answer" - I'm looking for Nissan's timeline and answers. Not speculation on our part (which we have done enough of in mynissanleaf.com).

        As to why would a dealer negotiate - see my first question. If priority goes with me, then if I move to another dealer then the car goes with me. The origial dealer doesn't get to sell the reservation to someone else.
        • 4 Months Ago
        I am pretty confident I can answer two of these:

        "- Will we get enough time to negotiate the price with various dealers and not lose our place in the queue?"

        Sure there will be time, but why would the dealer sell to you for $N-100 when there are 17,000 people in line behind you willing to pay full price? There really aren't any substitutes, so it's a seller's market.

        "- Are they getting a Green Leaf ?"

        Not in the first year. Would be nice though.
      • 4 Months Ago
      > Not that anyone really reads this stuff, but...
      Someone does (if only to check if someone read *my* comment - obviously not :-)



      I have just checked back and now feel validated .... in a sarcastic, self-absorbed sort of way. Thanks for that.

      • 4 Months Ago
      Google just anounced Android 2.2 at Google IO ( http://www.youtube.com/googledevelopers#p/c/CF01A789E62F2454 ), and I think it would be a perfect OS for this car, you can remotely (from any web conencted computer) instruct the remote device to download some music, or open the navigation to some destination, or get some app from Android Market (could be a phone or could be the car if it had Android 2.2 on car computer).

      Anyway let's hope Nissan gives Android the same atention as this iPhony app beacuse Android is almost in every brand now.

      And the Android Notification System is way ahead of any other phone system.
        • 4 Months Ago
        Not to mention the wifi portable hot-spot (aka wireless thetering) that comes standard in Android 2.2 and it can give wireless to all your devices in the range.

        This would be perfect for all devices inside the car that would require internet access (phones, iPads, laptops).

        And did you see the music app (also demoed at Google IO) that can play over the internet all your music collection from your home computer's Hard Disk, so you don't need to carry disks or any storage media, yet can access virtually unlimited storage ;)

        That is the Future Now done with actual technology, so why do we have to wait for next version of Nissan Leaf to do this? or will we we be able to just update the OS inside Leaf's computer with Android 3.0 ?;)
      • 4 Months Ago
      The iphone app should have a whole lot more info on range/charging.

      I would want the app to know the car's soc and then I type (or bettter say) my desired route (i.e. work-gym-dry cleaners-pub-home). The app should know the predicted temperatures and winds and road conditions (wet?) and my payload and get pretty darn close in knowing what my soc will be upon returning. If I can't make it on the high speed route, then it should suggest a lower speed eco route (i.e. avenues instead of freeways) and tell me what the eta will be either way. The app should have traffic built in and suggest alternate routes for this as well.
      • 4 Months Ago
      BTW,

      IMO this kind of smartphone/BEV/gps simulator interface is what will sell the low range cars. Once you learn to trust the simulator, you can plan your trips through your phone and know with a pretty high degree of accuracy how much range you'll have left or if you'll have to modify your trip or take a slower speed route/ wait for more charge. This kind of app done right (with enough inputs and perhaps some learning on the computers part incorporating real world results) could turn trip planning for a low range BEV (even only a 50 mile AER car) into a game that creates enthusiasts/ helps sales .... kind of like how the mpg game drums up interest for hybrid drivers.
      • 4 Months Ago
      I assume it is joking.
      But what do you really think of the app I wonder.
      I think it is rather clever actually.
      Assuming the car is plugged in, being able to ramp the internal temp to what you want before driving off is very, very clever.
      The battery status is a good idea too.

      Since it is connected, the only other things I would like maybe are:
      load, delete, copy music from cars system.
      same for address book and POIs and routes for nav.

      If there is electric seat adjustment etc then it would be nice if it could recall set positions for different users and that could be dialed in remotely.
      It would also be nice if it had a sort of alarm feature - where if you are heading out the door five days a week at the set time then you could have it set seat, mirrors, radio station, temp, etc at same time every day.
      • 4 Months Ago
      So can you remotely request a cabin temperature change if the Leaf is NOT plugged in, or does this feature work ONLY when connected to the grid?
        • 4 Months Ago
        Probably, but the main value is that when plugged in it can use electricity from the grid, instead of draining energy from the battery. That means more energy reserve available when you're ready to go, and less energy demand from the battery for cooling or heating.
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