While consumers are feeling the pinch at the pumps, software developers are creating mobile solutions for finding the best gas prices in a region. It may be time to start checking these out.. In a new Houston Chronicle article, Dwight Silverman reviews the top mobile apps:
Where – Free. iOS, Android, BlackBerry, webOS, Windows Phone.
If you're already a user of this popular location app, you may not need to download anything else. Where is a great tool for finding all kinds of things in your vicinity – restaurants, hotels, grocery stores, theaters and, yes, gas stations. It presents you with nearby stations in either a list or map view.
AroundMe – Free / $2.99 for ad-free version, iOS only.
AroundMe is similar to Where in that it's a multipurpose app, showing you locations for all kinds of businesses. For gas stations, the emphasis is on location rather than pricing.
GasBuddy – Free, iOS, Android, Windows Phone.
GasBuddy is the best-known name in cheap-gas tracking. Its website is very popular, and is smartly broken up into location-based URLs based on states and cities. For example, you can check Houston prices in any Web browser at HoustonGasPrices.com, a GasBuddy site.
GasBook – Free / .99. iOS only.
GasBook is similar to GasBuddy in that it focuses solely on gas stations, but it adds a cool twist that's tied in with price reporting.
When you fill up, you can enter the pricing information as well as how many gallons you purchased. You can enter details about your vehicle, including the size of the gas tank. As you log your fill-ups, the app tracks your gas mileage and gives you a report over the week, month or year.
GasBag – Free / .99. iOS only.
GasBag is similar to GasBook in that it lets you log your fill-ups and tracks your mileage. However, unlike most of these apps, it's much more map-based. When you first launch the app, you're presented with a map view of stations, which makes more sense if you're in an unfamiliar area. However, if you want a list view, you're out of luck.
"Find cheap gasoline with your smartphone" Dwight Silverman. Chron.com, 5/5. http://blog.chron.com/techblog/2011/05/find-cheap-gasoline-with-your-smartphone/