Detroit – GM’s OnStar subsidiary will
offer smartphone applications that will let Chevy Volt owners control key
vehicle functions and OnStar features from afar.
applications for iPhone, BlackBerry and Android phones will be available when
the electric vehicle launches late this year, OnStar said. Remote access will
also be possible from a cellphone’s Web browser.
a Smart Start app for the iPhone, and at
International CES it launched a BlackBerry version of the app. Via cellular, the
apps transmit commands for remote starting, door locking and unlocking,
security-system arming and disarming commands, and trunk popping. Smartphones
with the app also act as car finders by honking the horn, and they also receive
notifications of a break-in.
Volt, the smartphone apps will remotely lock and unlock doors, honk the horn and
flash the lights, activate the heating or AC (from the power grid if the car is
plugged into a power outlet), remotely charge the vehicle if plugged in, set a
timer to remotely charge the vehicle during off-peak hours, and remotely view
the status of vehicle systems. On their cellphone display, Volt owners would be
able to see charge status, remaining vehicle range, cumulative and last-trip
miles per gallon, and odometer and trip odometer readings. The smartphone would
also receive vehicle diagnostic updates via email with a regular OnStar
OnStar app, consumers will be able to remotely unlock doors, honk the horn and
flash the lights without making a call to an OnStar call center, but the call
centers will continue to offer key OnStar service, including automatic crash
response, turn-by-turn navigation, hands-free calling and stolen vehicle