Volkswagen adds new features to Car-Net mobile app

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Volkswagen of American says it’s adding new to its VW Car-Net Security & Service starting today. They include alerts to let owners know when their Volkswagens are being driven past a set curfew or taken for a spin by an unscrupulous valet attendant and a service that finds off-street parking spaces.

New curfew alerts arm parents in the war with teenagers by notifying them if their vehicle is being driven after a set curfew time, without their permission. When activated, the features sends an email or SMS text alert, or both.

A valet alert sends similar notifications any time the owner’s vehicle goes more than 0.2 miles from the last parked location — a service presumably developed after software developers viewed the below valet scene from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”

Lastly, the parking information feature is powered by Parkopedia and operates though the Navigate tab in the app. Users click a “P” icon to show available parking locations in the immediate area or near a point of interest. The service displays the address, hours of operation and pricing, and it works with the vehicle’s navigation system via the “Send to My VW” button, if so equipped.

The new features add to existing ones like remote lock and unlock, vehicle diagnostics, and speed and boundary alerts aimed, once again, at scofflaw teens. They continue the steady encroachment of the Internet of Things into the automobile, adding to new features like GM’s Marketplace in-dash app, GM and Volvo’s new in-car delivery service with Amazon, and Volvo’s forthcoming integration of Google Assistant voice-command and other services as part of its partnership with the Internet giant.

Owners of new models equipped with VW Car-Net can trial the service with a free six-month trial subscription from Verizon Telematics. Continuing the service costs $199 for one year, $378 for two or $540 for three years. Or go month to month for $17.99, not including taxes and fees.

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