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Fuel price apps to help save you money

By James Whitbourn, 08 Apr 2016 Car News

Fuel price apps to help save you money

Consumer watchdog the ACCC to give consumers access to real-time retail fuel price information, and app developers are set to deliver the money-saving data to your smart device from May 20.

The availability of retail fuel price data is set to spark smart device apps that will help Australian consumers save money at the bowser.

The apps will allow consumers to search for the cheapest fuel price by location, and will be driven by data from a large number of petrol stations.

The new availability of fuel-price data came about as the result of a the consumer watchdog the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission taking market intelligence company Informed Services to the Federal Court.

Informed Services previously only shared the price data between the major fuel retailers, which was believed to encourage anti-competitive behaviour. The data will be available to consumers from May 20.

Fuel price apps are not new, but their usefulness until now been limited by the reliability and volume of price information available. The new apps will cover to about 60 percent of petrol retailers, including BP Australia, Caltex Australia, Woolworths and 7-Eleven, which recently launched its own fuel-price app.

An ACCC report released last year showed that petrol price drops had not been passed on to consumers. The report said that despite falling oil prices, retail margins are the highest they have been since monitoring began in 2002.

The apps, which will provide updated fuel prices every 15 minutes, will help drive broader price competition, while letting consumers find the least pricey petrol.