This section is devoted to 'black box' video recorder apps for iPhone devices, which can be used to create a visual record of your car journey.
Black Box Recorder
Info Get it here
What is it? A black box video recorder that creates a record of your journey, which then can be used for a variety of purposes such as evidence in the event of an accident.
How does it work? The Black Box recorder captures your car journey, as seen through the windscreen. This app records the trip in 4-minute segments of video, with the oldest recordings being recycled to allow for continuous recording. Segments can be permanently saved by touching a capture button on the screen. This app runs in the background and doesn't show the live footage being recorded.
Video export Here's a sample video of the Black Box app. This video has been exported directly from the app and includes any additional overlay information.
Verdict While it's not the most feature-packed app, its background recording removes the temptation to stare at the phone's display while you should be looking at the road – something that the other two black box apps here tend to suffer from. However, the interface is just too bland and it isn't clear when recording is in progress. Another big disappointment is the lack of data on the video: there's no speed or position overlay.
Info Get it here
What is it? A black box-type video recorder that creates a record of your journey, which can then be used as evidence in the event of an accident, or even as a track-day memento.
How does it work? The Witness Driving app creates a video record of your car journey viewed through the windscreen. It uses a rolling loop to record video in segments, which means you never run out of memory. The vehicle's speed and location are also displayed on the screen, using an unobtrusive overlay. If the app detects a heavy impact, it will stop recording to ensure the impact video is preserved if you're unable to manually save it. There's also a section to record photos and witness details from the scene of an accident.
Video export Here's a sample video of the Witness Driving app. This video has been exported directly from the app and includes any additional overlay information.
Verdict This app might not have the high-tech display of some black box-type recorders, but the clean, un-fussy output gives a much clearer picture of what's happening on the road. Videos are easily shared on social media sites, or exported to your computer. As you can see above, the exported video is smooth, clear and includes the unobtrusive speed and location overlay. Our pick of the black box-type apps.
Info Get it here
What is it? A black box-type video recorder that creates a record of your journey, which can then be used as evidence in the event of an accident or to monitor your driving style.
How does it work? Simply fix your phone in a windscreen mount and press record. The app will video your trip in segments, using a loop recording system that recycles the earliest clip when a user-defined amount of memory is reached. This means you can create a virtually continuous record of any journey – whatever its length. Along with the video record, your route, speed and average speed are also embedded on the clip.
Video export Here are two sample videos of the Black Box app. One version is with all the overlay information included, while the second is with the overlay disabled.
Dash Cam with overlay video fails to export smoothly.
Dash Cam with overlay disabled video exports smoothly, but without speed or location.
Verdict This is a great app that's simple to use and configure. The display is excellent, too and video quality is smooth and clear when played within the app. Video records can be watched within the application, or exported to YouTube, Facebook, e-mail, or your phone's camera roll. However, when we exported the video with all the speed and mapping included, the clip would not play properly. Shame – it's a great app, otherwise.