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Chevy Offers Free OnStar Services for Winter Protection

Chevrolet Offers Up to 3 Free Months Of ONSTAR Service

General Motors has announced it is offering up to three months of free OnStar service to over 19 million eligible Chevrolet customers.

As a cold winter with above-normal snowfall is forecasted1, Chevrolet is providing customers with a little extra peace of mind. The automaker says this free of charge offer will give owners “an extra layer of security during the winter months, which can bring dangerous driving conditions with heavy snowfall, ice and freezing rain.” Starting today, Chevrolet is offering up to6 three complimentary months of OnStar2 safety and security coverage to more than 19 million eligible customers.

The offer gives owners an extra layer of security during the winter months, which can bring dangerous driving conditions with heavy snowfall, ice and freezing rain. The services available, such as Automatic Crash Response3, Roadside Assistance4, Emergency Services5, Crisis Assist5 and access to a live advisor at the push of a button, can help owners feel more secure on the road when driving conditions worsen.

“These services can help Chevy customers drive with confidence during some of the most dangerous times to be on the road,” said Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. “With OnStar, we’re bringing peace of mind to owners, knowing that an advisor is ready to help.”

To receive these services, eligible Chevrolet owners should push their blue OnStar button and tell the advisor that they’d like to enroll in Chevy’s complimentary OnStar Safety & Security4 offer. The advisor will automatically provide one month of OnStar safety and security services at no cost, and two additional months of coverage if the owner puts a credit card on file for monthly auto renewal6 in a plan.

The offer is available for any eligible, properly equipped 2006 and newer Chevrolet vehicle with inactive OnStar service. The enrollment period ends on Jan. 23, 2019.  

1According to the Farmers’ Almanac.
See for details and limitations. Services vary by model. Service plan required.
3OnStar links to emergency services. Not all vehicles may transmit all crash data.
4Roadside services provided by Allstate Roadside Services for vehicles only. Limitations and restrictions apply.
5OnStar plan, working electrical system, cell reception and GPS signal required. OnStar links to emergency services. See for details and limitations.
6Offer requires that you associate an approved payment method on file to your account and authorize recurring payments for your service plan. The amount and frequency of each recurring payment are based upon the service(s) and payment interval(s) you select from the options provided. You may cancel at any time by pushing your blue OnStar button or by calling 1.888.4ONSTAR (1.888.466.7827).

GM finally offers unlimited data for OnStar 4G LTE hotspots for 20$ per month

Chevrolet Offers Unlimited Data for OnStar 4G LTE Hotspots

General Motors will finally offer an unlimited data package for its OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot across its entire retail lineup. The package costs $20 per month, the data comes from AT&T and the billing comes just one month at a time, so you don’t have to sign up for a whole year at once or anything like that.

After using more than 4 million gigabytes of data in 2016, Chevrolet owners in the U.S. with an in-vehicle OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot[1] will now have access to an unlimited prepaid data plan for only $20 per month[2].

Chevrolet data usage has increased exponentially as owners have come to appreciate the ability to stream video on a tablet, send email on a laptop or play online using a gaming console in their vehicles[3], and now customers can utilize the full potential of their OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot without worrying about running out of data.

Chevrolet owners and their passengers streamed the equivalent of more than 17.5 million hours of video in 2016. “We’re pleased to deliver this special unlimited data plan to Chevy owners,” said Chris Penrose, president, IoT Solutions, AT&T. “Accessing the internet through AT&T’s 4G LTE Wi-Fi, passengers now can access all of their content and enjoy endless entertainment on the go.”

Previously, $20 would only get you 4 gigabytes of data each month. In fact, to make room for the unlimited plan, GM rearranged its other plans. Both the 4GB ($20 per month) and 10GB plans ($40 per month) have been removed in favor of the unlimited plan. You can still pay $10 a month for 1GB of data, if that’s what you really want.

As the first automaker to offer 4G LTE connectivity across its entire retail portfolio, Chevrolet has sold more than 3.1 million OnStar 4G LTE-connected vehicles since June 2014 and has more vehicles on the road equipped with 4G LTE than any other automaker.

Today, along with the 4G LTE connection enabled by AT&T, the OnStar Basic Plan comes standard on all new Chevrolet retail models. The Basic Plan includes select remote vehicle services and the OnStar AtYourService marketplace via the myChevrolet mobile app[4] among other features.

For more information on plans and pricing, please visit

[1] Visit for vehicle availability, details and system limitations. Services and connectivity may vary by model and conditions. 4G LTE coverage not available everywhere.

[2] Plus applicable taxes and fees. Plan provides access to AT&T wireless data services for your equipped vehicle for 30 days. Eligible vehicle and data plan required. Auto-renewal: Plans automatically renew every 30 days unless cancelled. To cancel at any time, call 1-888-466-7827 or press the blue OnStar button in your vehicle or the advisor link in your mobile app. Monthly charges will automatically be billed by AT&T to credit cards on file on day 30 unless cancelled. Payments are non-refundable (subject to applicable law).

[3] Always pay careful attention to the road and do not drive distracted. Wi-Fi hotspot intended for passenger use only when vehicle is in operation.

[4] Requires a compatible mobile device. Some features require a paid OnStar service plan.

onstar free emergency services during a disaster

How OnStar’s Emergency Service Handles Requests During a Disaster

Disaster can strike anywhere and at any time. Whether it’s a naturally occurring event like a hurricane or tornado or something man-made like an accident, explosion or chemical spill, OnStar Crisis Assist can provide you with critical aid during such emergencies. 

Our world is increasingly filled with internet-connected devices. Just about every new vehicle sold today comes with a cellular radio on board, capable of creating a wi-fi hotspot for passengers or sending maintenance data back to the dealer. Since 1996, General Motors has offered OnStar, a subscription-based communications and safety service that connects owners with a GM call center where operators can assist with navigation, remote diagnostics of mechanical issues, and, in an emergency, to detect a crash (including deployment of air bags) and proactively reach out to both the vehicle’s occupants as well as emergency services.

OnStar’s subscription service starts at $24.99 per month for the Safety & Security package, the least expensive one to offer Automatic Crash Response services. Though OnStar has millions of paid subscribers in the US, there are millions more GM vehicles with OnStar equipment on board that don’t pay for the service. And, in a major emergency, GM and OnStar don’t leave them out.

In 2005, following Hurricane Katrina, OnStar realized that its customers had special needs in hazardous situations aside from car crashes or other in-vehicle emergencies. It created a program called Crisis Assist, which allows all drivers of OnStar-equipped vehicles in a particular geographic area — even those without active OnStar subscriptions — to reach out to OnStar advisors for assistance with a wide variety of issues.

“During Katrina, and more recently during Harvey and Irma, our call volumes spike significantly when major evacuations are ordered,” explained Mary Ann Adams, Disaster Response and Crisis Incident Manager for OnStar. “We’re trying to help our customers evacuate. They’re mostly looking for hotels and shelters of last resort, so that’s what we’re doing before the hurricane hits.”

In October of last year, Hurricane Michael hit the Florida panhandle as a category four storm and OnStar’s call volumes spiked by 30 percent in the area. With cellular networks pushed to the limit, OnStar vehicles are better able to get through in some cases. They have more powerful on-board radios that can reach more distant cell sites than a handheld device could. She says that some emergency managers will use OnStar-equipped vehicles as mobile command centers because of the increased connectivity.

The service helps individuals communicate with their loved one, but it also connects them with resources. “We’ll help customers with things they need to find. They’ll come home and find that they don’t have a home, so we’ll help them with finding a hotel, finding fuel, whether there are generators available at Home Depot,” says Adams.”Roads will be damaged and signage is down, so we can help route them around damaged roads. We’ll have volunteer emergency workers going into an area, and they call in and we’ll help them find their destination.”

For Hurricane Michael, OnStar and other major businesses were connected with FEMA and state emergency management offices via a dedicated private sector desk. They’re connected with major hotel chains to determine real-time availability, which is useful when the nearest available rooms might be hundreds of miles away.

“When people are trying to find fuel, we’ll call ahead to find availability before we send you to somewhere that might not meet your needs,” said Adams. “We have a whole population of customers who don’t usually have access to an OnStar advisor. But they’ll have access to advisor services” when Crisis Assist is activated.

In those cases, OnStar will set up a dedicated team of operators that only work on calls coming in from certain geofenced areas. They gather information on common requests like road closures and evacuation routes for easy access. Lists of open pharmacies for emergency prescription refills, as well as current power outages and estimates on restoration are kept up to date.

OnStar works with an organization called Healthcare Ready, which keeps tabs on medical facilities (especially dialysis centers) and hospitals that are open. If advisors directed a customer with a medical emergency to a particular facility, OnStar will call ahead to advise of the situation.

Disaster-prone states like Texas, Florida, and North Carolina are increasingly making real-time information available via websites and social media, and the trick is collating all the information and distributing it to the public in a useful way. OnStar ends up being a source to distribute that information.

Customers can call in and inform OnStar about downed trees or power lines, with advisors taking the information and passing it on to emergency managers or the power company directly. This frees up overwhelmed 911 emergency dispatchers from taking these non-emergency calls, which can make a real difference. With that extra volume, emergency calls to OnStar can also last much longer than a typical request, which taxes bandwidth. “We were on the phone with someone in Florida for an hour” during Hurricane Michael last year, said Adams. “A normal navigation call might be 60 or 90 seconds. ‘Can you get me to this address?’ But an emergency call could take 10 minutes or 10 hours. It depends on the situation. We will not hang up until we’ve handed it off to first responders on scene.”

It also depends on the storm. During Katrina, Adams points out, not enough people evacuated. During Hurricanes Gustav and Rita, too many were evacuated and the roads were clogged. OnStar was 1,000-percent increases in call volume during Gustav in the impacted area. These days, evacuations are much more targeted and, so far at least, have been appropriate.

Adams says call volume increases depends on the area and the strength of the storm. A disaster hitting a major metropolitan area will affect far more people than something more rural. During the landfall of a hurricane, calls will drop because people are hunkered down. After, the numbers surge as people try to get back home.

After two weeks, call volume starts to return to normal and the OnStar team examines its response, what can be done better, and prepares for the next storm.


GM and Bechtel plan to build thousands of electric car charging stations across the US

GM Will Use OnStar Data To Plan Its Future EV Charging Network

General Motors has teamed up with Bechtel Enterprises to build thousands of electric vehicle charging stations across the US.

General Motors, America’s largest automaker, and Bechtel, the country’s largest construction company, are teaming up to build thousands of electric vehicle fast-charging stations across the United States. The two companies have agreed to create a new company that will build the charger network.

The companies have signed a memorandum of agreement to form a new corporate entity that will manage this new business. GM will be responsible for providing data and logistics support to determine where chargers should be placed, and Bechtel will manage the engineering, building and permitting of the stations. Neither GM nor Bechtel plans to contribute money to this new venture, rather they are seeking outside investment. Executives could not name the companies invited to participate.

But rather than adding to the electric highway, GM may be targeting cities and other densely populated areas that don’t offer electric vehicle owners a place to recharge. Many customers live in high-rises and sprawling apartment complexes that don’t always offer a place to recharge, and buyers may not always have the option of installing one themselves in their garage, which has been the strategy of most EV owners to date. But GM will have an edge on the planning phase of this operation in the form of anonymized data gathered from OnStar customers that have opted into the subsidiary’s data sharing program.

The enterprise will rely, in part, on data from General Motors cars, both electric and gasoline, to learn when and where people tend to drive and to park. The company will look at data from millions of vehicles through GM’s OnStar system.

All new GM vehicles are standard equipped with OnStar hardware that can track the vehicle’s locations, and some owners subscribe to the telematics service for emergency response support and navigation. This deep well of information will help the manufacturer understand the travel habits and patterns of its customer base to figure out where it would make the most sense to build its charging stations.