How would you like to have an app that helps you outsmart the parking ticket person who seems to know exactly when your meter runs out every time? If you hate getting parking tickets because you forgot how much time there was left in the meter, there’s an app for that. Meter Maid from Zach Waugh is a simple and super useful iPhone app that serves as a timer and location plotter for whenever you’re parking your car at a meter. It’s not rocket science but it is one of those apps that can bring you peace of mind. You just tell Meter Maid how much time you’ve got left in the meter, and it reminds you with a Push notification 10 minutes before your time is about to run out. On top of that you can use Meter Maid to drop a pin on its internal map as a reminder for where you parked your car which can be useful if you’re in a large parking lot such as a theme park, shopping mall, or concert.
So its basically 2 apps in one, a GPS car park locator and an alarm to help you avoid getting those pesky parking tickets. When the app opens up tap the location button on the top right and then tap the small key button on the top right to drop a red pin the map, as a reminder for when you’re looking for your car later. Then after you’ve put in your coins or paid for the meter, tap the digital timer and enter your “Time on Meter” in minutes and hours and then tap Done. You’ll get a friendly reminder that states your meter has been set and “You will be notified 10 minutes before the meter expires.” You can now close the Meter Maid app if you want.
The graphics in this app are pretty amazing, you see a virtual meter with a digital and analog hand showing how much time is left on your meter, with a cartoon city background. Meters can be set for up to 8 hours. The reminder comes in 10 minutes before your time runs out, but if you set the meter for more that 4 hours, it will remind you 20 minutes ahead of time, which is pretty intuitive. Unfortunately you can’t set a custom reminder time which might be good, but then again it is a simple app that just works with a few taps. While the GPS map feature is nice to have, it won’t tell you what level you parked on or anything, but it does give you directions back to your car within reason. The push notifications are a great selling point since you don’t need to have the app running, but keep in mind that you will need to have an internet connection to get them, so if you’re out of your network coverage area, be sure to check the app once in a while.
Overall, Meter Maid is a nice reference utility for iPhone 3G users and worth the buck which can save you money spent on parking violations down the line.
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