Just when you thought Facebook couldn’t get more ubiquitous.
OnStar is a service that lets you get roadside assistance through voice-activated commands as well automatically dispatch emergency services in the event of a collision or other mishap. Typically, the company has advertised its wares using fear-based targeted ads that portray drivers in peril being comforted by the omniscient OnStar system guiding help in their direction. Now, OnStar is about to change their game up a bit. According to Freep, OnStar will start rolling out services that allow for voice-activated Facebook operation from your vehicle. Drivers will be able to hear updates read to them or be able to update their own Facebook status as well as send text messages.
There will be an ad campaign called “Live On” that will showcase these features. According to Freep’s unidentified source, GM executives want to catch up with Ford’s successful Sync campaign, and they’re using OnStar to achieve this. OnStar has a little experience in this area, specifically in the integration of smartphone apps to monitor car vitals and engage locks, horns, and ignition systems.
It’s still unclear whether this will be packaged into OnStar’s current subscription plans. Right now, the first year is typically free, followed by an $199 annual fee or $299 annual fee, depending on the services requested. The source said that OnStar is considering enabling some of these services for free to non-subscribers, but that hasn’t been finalized.
While the idea of Facebook and OnStar may seem outlandish at first, and innovation that automakers integrate into vehicles that keep drivers’ eyes off their mobile devices and on the road is good thing in our book. As more governments start drafting legislation to ban texting while driving, services like these will become ever more popular.
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