In conjunction with AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) and utilizing its OnStar service, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) will offer 250 megabytes of 4G LTE high-speed connectivity for Internet browsing, video streaming and other uses.
Pay as you go, literally
Experts are already questioning the merits of the service that essentially competes with the data packages that multiple passengers probably already have.
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“It’s a bit of a trial and error to see what sticks with consumers,” remarked Thilo Koslowski, an analyst at Gartner Group who tracks car connection news. “Companies will initially face a consumer reaction of ‘I already have a data plan with my phone.’ That means that in the in-vehicle experience has to be better, faster and more robust. If that is not strong enough, prices will have to drop.”
Present OnStar subscribers can purchase 200 megabytes monthly for $5 while nonsubscribers will have to foot a $10 bill. OnStar subscriptions cost between $200 and $300 annually. Subscribers interested in the biggest package, 10 gigabytes of data over a year, will pay $150 versus $200 for those that don’t subscribe to OnStar.
The pricing structure, for now, may fall on deaf ears as General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) as yet to release a 4G LTE-equipped auto yet. The 2015 Chevrolet Malibu will be the first make that comes equipped with this opt-in feature. Before the end of the year, GM is planning for over 30 models to carry the potential over its Chevrolet, GMC, Buick and Cadillac lines.
In addition to support for laptops, tablets and phones, the company will offer applications that can use the 4G LTE connection on in-dash screens including an application from the Weather Channel.
Up to seven devices can be connected with the service and General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) is rolling out a bevy of applications for console screen use. Among them are Slacker Radio and Glympse that allow users access to over 13 million songs and the ability to share real-time driving with friends and family respectively.
On top of that, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) has revealed that it has around 50 coders developing apps like “Vehicle Health” that will inform drivers if there are mechanical issues with their cars.
“We want to try and demystify the check engine light,” GM Chief Technology Officer Tim Nixon said.