OnStar expands smartphone control to most 2011 General Motors vehicles [w/Video]

Filed under: Technology, GM

OnStar mobile applications – Click above for high-res image gallery

Early this year, General Motors’ OnStar telematics unit unveiled a smartphone application it had developed for the Chevrolet Volt that allows drivers to remotely manage the charging, locking and unlocking of their vehicle and pre-warm or cool it while plugged in. OnStar is now extending that basic concept to nearly the entire General Motors lineup for 2011.

One of the key hardware differences between OnStar and Ford’s Sync technology is that GM integrates cellular radios into the car while Ford relies on the driver’s existing phone connected via Bluetooth or a cable. This allows Ford to offer services like turn-by-turn directions without charging a subscription fee. OnStar has long struggled to find a way to convince customers to continue paying the subscription after the initial complimentary period expires.

The integrated cellular radio allows OnStar to offer services like remote starting, car location and lock/unlock from anywhere that can’t be done with Sync or just a short-range key fob. The applications will also provide access to vehicle data like tire pressures and oil levels, and allow owners to call an OnStar adviser or schedule service appointments with a dealer. The applications will be available for Androids and iPhones. You can check out a video after the jump.

Gallery: OnStar mobile applications

[Source: General Motors]

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OnStar expands smartphone control to most 2011 General Motors vehicles [w/Video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 22 Jul 2010 12:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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