Hope this answers some of your questions:
OnStar is expanding its mobile app technology beyond the Chevrolet Volt to include the majority of vehicles in the 2011 Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC portfolios. Weíre demonstrating the features that will soon be coming to customers as part of distinct brand-specific mobile apps for owners that each brand will be bringing to market in the months ahead.
What can the app technology do?
This technology takes the best features from OnStar and places it in the palm of your hand. Drivers will have the ability to remotely start their vehicle, activate horn and lights and lock/unlock their vehicleís doors from their smartphones.
In addition, drivers can get access an up-to-date health report of their vehicle anytime they need it including fuel tank level and range, remaining oil life, current and recommended tire pressure and lifetime average miles-per-gallon thatís accurate as of the last vehicle start.
Current odometer reading, vehicle VIN and OnStar account number will also be readily accessible within the apps. And should OnStar subscribers need assistance with something that the mobile apps donít provide, they can one-touch dial to specially-trained advisors, who are available to assist customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
How does this technology work?
This technology uses OnStarís unique connection to remotely deliver services from the cloud to your vehicle. When a user requests a service, their smartphone will send a signal to OnStar who will validate the information and send a secure signal to the vehicle to execute the request.
What smartphones will this technology work on?
At this time, the technology has been validated on the iPhone (including the new iPhone 4) and the Android mobile OS (including the Droid, Droid Incredible and new Droid X).
What vehicles will this technology work on?
The OnStar mobile app technology will be functional on 2011 Chevrolet Volt, Cruze, Avalanche, Camaro, Equinox, Impala, Suburban, Tahoe and Traverse; Cadillac SRX, CTS, DTS, Escalade, Escalade ESV and Escalade EXT; Buick Enclave, LaCrosse and Lucerne; GMC Acadia, Terrain, Yukon, Yukon XL.
What about vehicles older than 2011? Will the mobile app technology work for them?
The mobile app technology requires OnStarís new hardware, Gen 9, which just launched with the 2011 model year.
What about 2011 vehicles that arenít listed, like the Buick Regal?
Each vehicle not included has unique engineering limitations that prohibit this technology from working that are different from product to product. Weíre working closely with our partners in vehicle development to expand the availability of this technology as quickly as possible.
When will these apps be available to customers?
Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC are working to bring their mobile applications to customers as quickly as possible. Each brand has a different rollout schedule, but expect to see more news on this front in the months ahead.
How do the remote connectivity features differ from what I can already do on my key fob?
The big difference is that you donít have to be near your vehicle for the features to work. Say for example youíre racing to catch a flight and you realize when you reach your gate that you forgot to lock your car. Instead of having to go all the way back to the parking deck, you can simply take out your smarphone and send a lock signal down to your vehicle. Or say youíre at the ballpark on a hot sunny day and you want your vehicle to be cooled down for you by the time you make the long walk back to it. You can use your smartphone to remotely start your vehicle and have the A/C working for you before you even leave the stadium.
What happens if someone takes my phone? Can they then control my car or get critical information about me and my vehicle?
No-just to log into the app, youíll need to have a personal user ID and password, and the vehicle connectivity features have a separate added layer of protection though a secure PIN that must be entered in order to send the command to the vehicle. Additionally, on the back-end, we have more than 15 years of experience of securely delivering remote connectivity services, and are firmly committed to keeping our subscriberís
Will there be an additional fee for mobile app services?
OnStar will plan to offer the mobile app services as part of a customerís basic OnStar subscription.
Will the Google navigation features you announced in March be available for Android users on the Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC apps?
The full breadth of services for the production applications are still being defined, but as we demonstrated, this technology is currently planned for a 2.0 version of the mobile app for the Volt. Stay tuned.
Is the Volt still going to have a separate app?
Yes, the Chevrolet Volt mobile app is still planning to launch as a unique app to customers in tandem with the launch of the vehicle later this year.
How is this app different from offerings from competitors?
OnStar was the first automaker to reveal a working connected vehicle smartphone application when we announced the Chevrolet Volt mobile application during CES in January. While other automakers have brought other apps to market since then, none offers the full breadth of services that we do. Itís also important to note that this is only version 1.0 Ė as we demonstrated with the Google navigation features we demonstrated at Google I/O, weíre committed to continued innovation in this space.