After 18 Years, OnStar Still Evolving to Keep People Connected – John McFarland

2014 marks another milestone in OnStar history as we begin to roll out OnStar with 4G LTE
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OnStar is synonymous with safety and security.  This hard earned recognition was earned with 18 years of unwavering commitment to our 6.5 million subscribers in the U.S., Canada, China and Mexico.  But for us, it’s about so much more than helping our subscribers get safely from point A to point B.

At OnStar, we strive to empower our customers to do more by offering powerfully simple connections enabled by advanced technology and brought to life with a human touch. It’s about helping a mother in the event of an accident, even if she’s unable to call for help. It’s about enabling a father to unlock his car door with his smartphone when the kids hit the lock button a bit too soon. It’s about a friend knowing her vehicle is in great shape before heading out for a trip and about a contractor knowing his livelihood isn’t at risk if someone steals his work truck. Most of all, it’s about empowering our customers to do more and make life’s connections.

My mother in law is 68 years old, and while fully capable of driving, she has always been fearful of driving outside of familiar areas.  What if she got lost? What if something happened on the road? Now that she has a new car, connected by OnStar, she has the confidence to drive wherever she chooses.  Because she knows a live OnStar advisor is just a button push away to give her directions, help her find the nearest gas station, connect her to her loved ones or even call emergency response if she’s ever in a crash – she feels empowered to drive where she never would before. She now drives to Detroit, alone, to visit her 3-year-old grandson. She would have never done this before. This is what it means to empower our customers, to be connected by OnStar.

The year 2014 will mark another milestone in OnStar history as we begin to roll out OnStar with 4G LTE. Starting on select model year 2015 vehicles, this 10th generation of OnStar will include a built-in 4G LTE connection that will allow for voice and high-speed data.  For our customers, this means enhanced safety and telematics services, a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot that keeps them connected on the road, and the ability to continue to add features and capability to their vehicle long after it’s been purchased. For OnStar, this provides an unprecedented opportunity to maintain an on-going relationship with our customers and enhance the overall ownership experience.

Quite simply, a Chevrolet connected by OnStar with 4G LTE is more powerful than ever. Safety will always be the cornerstone of the OnStar brand, but as the technology evolves, so does our opportunity to differentiate our brands and transform our customer’s ownership experience.


John McFarland, Director of Global Insights and Brand Strategy for OnStar and Global Connected Consumer, is responsible for developing and implementing strategy for the OnStar brand and infotainment systems including Chevrolet MyLink, GMC and Buick IntelliLink and Cadillac CUE.

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