The North American International Auto Show isn’t where you would expect to see a telecommunications company, but at the recent show Verizon made an exciting announcement that has many of us taking. They introduced us to their new system, the Verizon Vehicle.
Is This the End of OnStar?
For years people have been looking at GM vehicles with their OnStar and drooling. OnStar has a lot of capabilities that people want. You can make hands free calls or use it as a GPS. The most important features of the OnStar system is the ability to automatically call for an emergency vehicle when it detects and accident and that it can run a continual diagnostic on your car, letting you know when something is wrong with it. The bad part has always been that it is only available in newer GM vehicles, so if you weren’t a GM fan or just didn’t have the cash to shell out for a newer vehicle you were out of luck.
You Don’t Need a GM Vehicle for OnStar Style Service
Verizon has come out with something that may end up being some heavy competition for OnStar, the Verizon Vehicle.
Verizon’s new system is a subscription service that will bring a variety of services directly to your car, no matter its make or model, as long as your car is equipped with the second generation On Board Diagnostic port (OBD-II).
With the purchase of a subscription service you get a free device that plugs directly into your cars OBD-II port where it will run a continual diagnosis of your vehicles systems. Along with this device you get a speaker with a one-touch Button Clip that can be easily clipped to your visor.
This is a 100% wireless system that continually analyzes your vehicle system and sends information either via an app or to the Bluetooth speaker.
Features of Verizon Vehicle
A few features that the Verizon Vehicle offers include:
- GPS tracking ability so you always know where your car is. This is a helpful feature if your car is stolen, but it is also useful in the event of a breakdown, accident or if you need roadside assistance.
- Automatic Urgent Incident Alert System which automatically places a call to the Verizon Vehicle Member Care Center when the computer suspects an accident. This will usually occur when your vehicle computer has registered the deployment of an airbag.
- One Touch SOS Assistance which will connect the driver with a live agent
- Predictive Diagnostics which means that it finds the problems before they occur and saves money on emergency repairs.
- Mechanic Hotline, which is staffed by A.S.E. Certified mechanics that will provide the driver with professional troubleshooting services
- Smart phone app that will help you keep track on time on your meter and to find where you left your vehicle when you parked it downtown
- Scheduled maintenance alerts
- 100% wireless
Similar to OnStar … but Different
The Verizon Vehicle is similar to OnStar but it still has a few differences. Currently the Verizon Vehicle doesn’t have any phone features or give you hotspot access, but as it is owned by one of the largest cellular phone companies out there, there is possibility of those features being added in the near future.
The big difference between Verizon Vehicle and OnStar is that you don’t need to drive a newer GM vehicle to have the service, it can be installed on any car that has an OBD-II port. That means you can drive almost anything and still get coverage, just check with your mechanic to ensue you have an OBD-II port.
The Verizon Vehicle hardware is absolutely free with a monthly subscription fee of $15 a month, this is less than the $19.99 monthly price tag that comes with OnStar. It’s also significantly less than the cost of a new vehicle.
If you want to learn more about this fantastic product then check out the video on the Verizon Vehicle website.