We’ve created our first iPhone App and iGoogle Gadget today, both at the same time! We figured it would be easier, as they say, to kill two birds with one stone. What we’ve put together is a service to lookup local gas prices via MSN Autos, and display the information in a fashion that is optimized for small areas.

Note: As you can imagine this is only for United States residents.

Our goal was to create something that wasn’t gaudy and hard to read, but at the same time we wanted to keep the load on our server to a minimum. We managed to reuse some JavaScript code from an existing iGoogle gadget, rework it, and develop it so that it can be used as a standalone website or as an iGoogle gadget. This is what the result looks like:

iGas Results

Once you begin using it you’ll notice that we’ve kept all of the ads off the service because it needs to load as quickly as possible since many users will be accessing it over a mobile Internet connection.

You can sort the results by the unleaded price, plus price, premium price, diesel price, or even by the name of the gas stations. This will help you quickly find the cheapest gas for the grade you need, but there’s one thing you should know. Some gas stations don’t report their prices for all of the various types of gas available. When you sort by the price of premium gasoline, for example, we remove all of the results that don’t have any data available for that particular grade. That’s why you’ll almost always see fewer results when you sort by any type of gas besides unleaded.

Under the price of each gas station is the date that particular price was retrieved. MSN is fairly good about having the most recent data, but often times it is still a day or two old. Don’t blame us for price inaccuracies.

UPDATE (01/16/2008): We’ve made the addresses clickable so that a Google Map will be displayed. If you’re on the iPhone the Maps application will open up, and from there you can get directions.

–Mobile/iPhone Setup–

For mobile/iPhone users to start using the service, it’s pretty simple. Just point your browser to http://cybernetnews.com/igas, enter in your zipcode, and select how you want the results sorted.

iGas Homepage

I recommend bookmarking the site after you have performed a search, because it will always take you directly to the gas prices for that particular zip code. It just saves you some hassle from having to enter in the zip code each time, and there is always a button at the bottom of the results page to change the zip code.

–iGoogle Setup–

In just a couple of clicks you can have local gas prices showing up on your personalized iGoogle homepage as well. Just click this button to add the gadget to iGoogle:

Add to Google

And then enter in the zipcode and pick how you want the information sorted:

iGas iGoogle

This gadget also looks great on the iGoogle homepage that is optimized for the iPhone.