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Vrooooom! Start your car (and more) from your iPhone or iPod touch


TUAW reader Ethan pointed us in the direction of something new, cool, and available only for iPhone and iPod touch (take that, Palm Pre and Android phones!)

BestBuy has an exclusive on the new Viper SmartStart System, which can do a number of things for your wheels:

  • Start your car with virtually unlimited range
  • Warm your car in winter; cool your car in summer
  • Unlock your car or truck
  • Arm the alarm to protect your car
  • Activate panic alarm to protect yourself
  • Receive push-button status notifications
It uses a free iPhone app [iTunes link] to give you that remote love, like when you are visiting friends overseas and want to scare people by starting your car up while it's sitting by itself in the airport parking lot. The developers also note that in the near future, a new release of the app will give you push notification if your car alarm goes off.

There are two versions available: a module (SmartStart VSM100 Module, US$299.99) for cars that are already equipped with compatible Viper starting systems, and a fully loaded package (SmartStart VSM4000 System, US$499.99) for the rest of us.

Some of the app reviewers have noted that you're not only paying for the system and your iPhone bill, but there's also a US$29 monthly annual GSM service bill that you'll have to pay (the first year of service is complimentary with your purchase). However, if the money isn't an object and you're already clueless about what to get a loved one for Christmas, this might be an idea to consider.

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