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OnStar Gives Volt Owners What They Want: Their Data, In the Cloud

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the mines-better dept.

Cloud 92

Volt owners will be able to brag about their mileage more easily now thanks to OnStar. "GM rushed work on a new API to get a popular Volt owner site back on road. You probably don't think of your car as a developer platform, but Mike Rosack did. A few days after buying his Chevy Volt, Rosack started slowly mining his driving data. But he eventually revved up his efforts and created a community platform for drivers to track their own efficiency. Today more than 1,800 Volt owners compare stats with each other, jockeying for position on Rosack's Volt Stats leader board."

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developer platform (4, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | about a year ago | (#42090339)

You probably don't think of your car as a developer platform

Sadly, you might soon have to, in the sense that you'll need to [pdf] [mcafee.com] keep your security patches up to date...

Re:developer platform (1)

rsmith84 (2540216) | about a year ago | (#42090537)

What a great reason to finish up restoring the '88 Trans AM GTA I started so many moons ago...

Faggots Desu. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090367)

The lot of them. Fucking yuppies, think they're saving the earth by saving a few gallons here and there while wastefully consuming extra resources on cars' batteries taken from strip mining, or the resources on servers and electricity that make this worthless mileage site run.

Re:Faggots Desu. (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#42090717)

But they get their own 'facebook/twitter' page. A first step to mandatory black boxes. Aren't you excited? They'll "dance to anything"..

But, (2)

bigpickle (2647701) | about a year ago | (#42090415)

how do we monetize this?

Re:But, (4, Informative)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about a year ago | (#42090431)

You get a discount for sharing it with your insurance company.

Re:But, (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090599)

You mean a surcharge for not sharing it with your insurance company.

Re:But, (3, Insightful)

markdavis (642305) | about a year ago | (#42090715)

EXACTLY.

I am quite pleased and proud that none of my vehicles share information with ANYONE in the "Cloud." Just because something CAN be done [that is "kewl"], doesn't necessarily make it a great idea.

Re:But, (2)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about a year ago | (#42090923)

That's today. Tomorrow there will be an additional charge for NOT sharing. Next year there will be a law that makes it illegal not to share.

Re:But, (3, Insightful)

maxwell demon (590494) | about a year ago | (#42091425)

That's today. Tomorrow there will be an additional charge for NOT sharing. Next year there will be a law that makes it illegal not to share.

The difference between a discount for sharing and an additional charge for not sharing is purely semantics. Both just mean that you'll pay more if you don't share. The only difference is which price you declare as base one. If you declare the lower price as standard, the higher means an additional charge, while if you declare the higher price as standard, the lower one means a discharge. Which one you declare as base price depends only on your marketing strategy. If you think you can better compete by making your base price as low as possible, you'll take the lower price as base price and hide the extra charges for not sharing in the fine print. If you think you can better compete by giving discounts, you declare the higher price as base price and market the savings possible when sharing as loudly as possible.

1,800 in the USA? (0)

turkeydance (1266624) | about a year ago | (#42090417)

even the KKK has more twitter presence.

Re:1,800 in the USA? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090969)

Makes sense. 75% of whites (and a good 100% of blacks) acknowledge that white people are superior. That only leave the 25% of white guilt retards to buy the volt.

And there is... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090449)

Yet another reason i'll never buy an onstar equipped car. Hands too much control to people you already paid once...

They can pull the plug on this at any time. or start charging for the data. or anything else scummy you can think of.. and you can do nothing about it.

I like computers. i really do. but i really dont want them in my car... or connected to the 'cloud'. it's stupid. If you're going that far where you need updates and connectivity for your car and official updates the dealer must install. (prius)

You're better off just renting a car. You're going to be paying forever to drive. They might as well be responsible for way more crap than what they are now.

hope they don't bill for data roaming (5, Funny)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year ago | (#42090529)

hope they don't bill for data roaming when you drive out side of the USA.

Re:hope they don't bill for data roaming (2)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090663)

You just gave some marketing asshole an orgasam.

"Out of the usa? no! you're out of your 'local area' and now get charged a higher rate! yes!
Oh our data shows you spend alot of time in other state X.... Well we can charge you extra for that too! Extended roaming periods! Yes!"

Even more good reasons not to tie your transportation to forever giving a company more money. On top of the already insanely expensive car that 'loses value' the second you drive it off the lot.

Re:hope they don't bill for data roaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42097387)

I'm not sure where you went to business school, but Marketing doesn't make up the fees and prices.

Re:hope they don't bill for data roaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091907)

I shipped an OnStar-equipped car out of the USA. OnStar uses CDMA, and in a country without any CDMA service, I'm just a driving FCC violation.

so don't pay (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091355)

Easily done.

I have an OnStar equipped car. They called me like 5 times to try to get me to pay, including once in my car (only call I ever got in the car as I didn't use the service). I didn't pay. And then it was shut off. I was even in an accident since and no phone calls or anything.

So why worry about them pulling the plug? You'll only lose service you already have said you don't want to use anyway.

As to updates for your cars, every car has updates now. Heck, I have a rental Ford right now due to the accident I was in and I managed to crash/corrupt Sync in it. The voice recognition system is permanently crashed, and there's no apparent way to reboot it.

So if you really are not going to own a car with updates, you'll simply have no real options left in a decade or so.

Re:so don't pay (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42095459)

Oh you'll be paying onstar sooner or later.. Your insurance company will want to give you a 'discount' for having it active. Or increase your rates for not having it on a car with it available.... It's a safety feature dont you know.

Wait and see... Thin edge of the wedge first. Frog in the slowly heating water... They WILL get you to comply. And pay for doing so. And you better fucking be happy about it or else.

Bet.

say what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42102343)

You're saying they'll charge me more for not getting it, then say I'll pay to comply. Sounds like I pay to not comply.

You make no sense.

This is bigger than OnStar, Progressive already has Snapshot. They don't need OnStar to do what you fear.

Re:so don't pay (1)

rockout (1039072) | about a year ago | (#42097305)

I really wish you hadn't posted as AC, so more people would read your very good points. You're one of the few making sense in this thread. Honestly, the "sky is falling" predictions coming from the other 90% of people posting about this make me question the average intelligence of a crowd reading "news for nerds."

Re:so don't pay (1)

ppanon (16583) | about a year ago | (#42103207)

For the most part I agree with what you say, certainly regarding insurance companies and OnStar. However law enforcement can get a court order to get OnStar to turn on the mic and monitor what's going on in your car, or shut down your engine, even if you haven't paid for the service. And, as has happened with systems like Carnivore, there's a history of surveillance being carried out in the US with minimal or no judicial review under the pretext of national security. So it's better to avoid making it easy for Big Brother (or a rogue law enforcement agent or industrial spy) to spy on you, just on general principle.

Re:And there is... (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#42092019)

I like computers. i really do. but i really dont want them in my car..

I do, just under my sole control. That includes encrypting stored data so that I control access to it.

Re:And there is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42092101)

They can pull the plug on this at any time. or start charging for the data. or anything else scummy you can think of.. and you can do nothing about it.

Yes to the scummy stuff and no to the helplessness. Onstar has GPS tracking, and I'm sure "law enforcement" would love that info so they can throw you in jail for the crime of parking your car in the vicinity of a murder. Or at least ruining your reputation by arresting you and then letting you go later.

However. It is fairly easy to disable the OnStar system on GM vehicles. I saw a guide the other day on how to disconnect the antenna(e); I figure that would break the Orwellian system pretty good. If one were to noodle on this for a while, one could probably find a way to break it and make it look like an accident; normal wear-and-tear.

Of course, as dumb and cowardly as most people are these days, going out of your way to do something to protect your privacy would be seen as evidence of wrongdoing. "Why did he disable his OnStar? WHAT IS HE HIDING??"

Re:And there is... (1)

steeler359 (674331) | about a year ago | (#42104253)

"You're better off just renting a car"

I think this pretty much hits the nail on the head. Why own a car that sits unused for 90%-99% of the time? When all cars drive themselves (as seems not only possible but entirely practical in the early 21st century), I can foresee the ability to book a car online, have it pick you up and then deposit you at you destination for a fraction of today's cab fare. The economics appear to make so much sense. Also, with self-driving, possibly networked cars, you'd go a long way towards eliminating traffic problems that plague most car commuters on a daily basis.

May be the cars won't be rented, maybe they'll be shared between people or something, but as soon as people realise they don't have to pay to a fortune to buy, then maintain and fuel their vehicle, I think the economics will speak for themselves.

Ah well, I can dream...

Nissan does something similar (4, Informative)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#42090527)

Nissan has a stats site for Leaf owners that compiles stats, ranks efficiencies, etc., for those who opt in. It's fairly interesting, and it does provide some motivation for driving more efficiently, which isn't a bad thing. The top drivers must only drive downhill, though. They get 22+ miles per kWh, which is insanely good.

The Nissan site is provided and operated by Nissan, though, rather than a fan.

There are a lot of cool things that can be done with a highly-computerized car that has its own 3G Internet connection and GPS. They're barely scratching the surface. It really makes me want to hack my car, but I don't want to void the warranty.

Re:Nissan does something similar (5, Funny)

aurashift (2037038) | about a year ago | (#42090773)

but I don't want to void the warranty.

Hand in your nerd card.

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#42090947)

but I don't want to void the warranty.

Hand in your nerd card.

Heh. $36,000 car. Leased. I'm definitely not that nerdy.

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | about a year ago | (#42091635)

The top drivers must only drive downhill, though. They get 22+ miles per kWh, which is insanely good.

Pfft, I can beat that, I have my Nissan Leaf hooked up to a horse, I'm approaching infinite miles per kWh!

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

SleazyRidr (1563649) | about a year ago | (#42098453)

Well, you'd be using the regenerative braking to be charging up the batteries as you go. So ... more than infinite?

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

Psicopatico (1005433) | about a year ago | (#42092425)

There are a lot of cool things that can be done with a highly-computerized car that has its own 3G Internet connection and GPS.

Put transmitters along the road at a few hundreds of meters each broadcasting the speed limit. Vehicles auomatically comply.

If someone modifies the car to ignore the signal, he'll be really easily spottable as the car runs faster than the others.
Confiscate the car and withdraw driver's license.

If additionally there's an accident involvement, charge with voluntary murder attempt, as cars don't modify themselves.

Sure there may be some signal overlapping problems to be overcome. I'm thinking about an highway crossing or being near a city center, but I'm sure a skilled team of engineers can successfully deal with it.

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#42093637)

Interesting ideas, though I was actually talking about things that are for the convenience of the owner/driver.

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

eightball (88525) | about a year ago | (#42094361)

There is some convenience in not being caught unawares by quick speed limit changes.
The important question is when a few transmitters at the beginning of a reduction are "out of service", will that indemnify you against the speed trap?

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

tgd (2822) | about a year ago | (#42093057)

They get 22+ miles per kWh, which is insanely good.

Impossibly good, its probably a math or recording error. To do that they'd need to maintain 22mph with only a touch more than 1hp of equivalent power usage, for an hour. The Leaf weighs 3400lbs, you couldn't get it up to speed or maintain its speed with so little power. And you'd have to be doing even better than that, if that is the average. I don't know what the current draw is of all the electronics in the car, either, but that is consumed power, too. I'd bet, best case, its still 1/4 of that being used just to keep the systems in the car running.

Re:Nissan does something similar (2)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#42093709)

As I said, I think they must be mostly driving downhill (somehow), or something similar. I average about 5 miles per kWh, though it's taken me a month of practice to work up to that. That's with top speeds of around 65 and average speeds of around 35. When I first got the car I was getting 3.8... and I thought I already knew how to drive efficiently.

At low speeds (22 mph is a good number), I've found that I can get around 10 miles per kWh, on average. The car is quite efficient, if the driver does a good job.

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

operagost (62405) | about a year ago | (#42094909)

Hypermilers: driving at half the speed limit on the highway, then subsequently twice the speed limit at off ramps since 1985.

Re:Nissan does something similar (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42095473)

" They get 22+ miles per kWh, which is insanely good"

Yes, insanely good but NOT accurate- More like 3-4+ miles per kWh.

Still insanely good....

This figure is the industry standard for Miles/kWh.

http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=2431

Now, in warmer weather I can average 5 miles per kWh employing dual motor/generator deceleration regeneration by one pedal driving in "L" shift position with my Amazing Chevy Volt EREV.

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/A8LGfBtCAAAyMfl.jpg:large

Best-

Thomas J. Thias

The Amazing Chevy Volt Extended Range Electric Vehicle- Facts Guy

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#42098389)

I can get 5 miles per kWh pretty consistently, with very careful driving. 22... like I said, they must be driving mostly downhill. I'm sure the measurement is reasonably-accurate, but we don't know what they're doing to get it. Perhaps towing their car uphill and driving it down or something equally ridiculous.

Re:Nissan does something similar (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42110923)

No, it's much simpler than that: when going uphill, they simply hit "Decline" on the center console screen that comes up every freaking time you start the car, asking if you consent to have your data sent to Nissan. No data is logged for the uphill trip; turn around, restart car, accept to send data, and coast downhill.

Really, it's just like any other cheaters in online games - they get some empty form of satisfaction over "winning" without playing by the rules. It's stupid. I notice a lot of these are from Japan. Don't know if that's just a reflection of the overall ratio of users in various countries, or something else.

I, on the other hand, use the data to look for interesting insights into my driving habits - all of them, including the trips going uphill or driving inefficiently in the fast lane.

Re:Nissan does something similar (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#42111887)

Ah... okay. Yeah, that's pretty stupid. I find the information very interesting as well, and have managed to significantly increase my driving efficiency (without being obnoxious on the road).

Egh. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090535)

It's amazing how "cloud" is now anything you transfer through the Internet.

I was thinking to buy a Volt... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090709)

But I'd like to make sure there is an opt-out (or better yet an opt-in) for this "service". I don't want my stats and/or whereabouts transmitted to anyone without my explicit knowledge/agreement.

Can anyone who may have one of these things confirm that this private data is something I don't have to be transmitting to some random company? I noticed the word "privacy" was mentioned 2x in the article, but both times it seemed to be to satisfy OnStar's requirements.

What's the scoop on this? It's been a while since I've bought a new car. Is this like, standard now?

it's not opt-out, it's opt-in (2)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about a year ago | (#42091541)

This is a 3rd party service and they cannot access your data without you authenticating to GM. So don't go to the site, don't log in and they don't get any data.

Re:it's not opt-out, it's opt-in (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#42092013)

This is a 3rd party service and they cannot access your data without you authenticating to GM. So don't go to the site, don't log in and they don't get any data.

You are missing the forest for the trees. GM still gets all of your data and who knows what they will do with it. It's all well and good that GM has some sort of authentication requirement to access the data off their servers, but there is one basic rule - information wants to be free. If you give it to someone else, sooner or later it will escape. The only way to guarantee that does not happen is to never give the information to anyone in the first place.

What we need to know is how well does the car work if I pull the sim card out so it can't ever give your information to GM in the first place.

there's no SIM slot (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about a year ago | (#42094769)

So you can't pull the SIM card. It uses CDMA, not GSM.

You can pull the fuse if you want.

AC asked about this service. I answered about this service.

I don't think GM is calling my car to get data from it and frankly I would be all that concerned if they did. License plate scanners are going to be so cheap and available within a year or two that you won't be able to go anywhere in a car without a dozen companies knowing where you went and unlike GM, you can't retaliate against them by changing car brands if they send out your data.

Re:there's no SIM slot (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#42096981)

I don't think GM is calling my car to get data from it

If it can phone home, it is. It is naive to assume otherwise for the simple fact that GM would not have put that ability in there if that wasn't their intention.

As for ANPR, a few things:
1) Regulation of what police departments can do with ANPR data is already in process in some jurisidictions and the more ubiquituous the collection the sooner more legislation will be passed.
2) A thousand privately-owned ANPR systems aren't that bad as long as the data isn't collected into a database that can cross-reference readings from different cameras.
3) Expect to see license plate hiding systems becoming more common, probably electro-chromic. There is no law requiring display of a license plate on private property, only publically owned roadways. So all those ANPR systems that Target and others have deployed in their parking lots can be easily foiled by someone who cares to foil them. The same kind of person who would disable their car phoning home and ratting them out.

Re:there's no SIM slot (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about a year ago | (#42102403)

If it can phone home, it is.

Phone home? I'm definitely not worried about it phoning home. Why would GM phone my data home? They aren't interested in the data. What would they do with it? They're going to make every car call home for data they don't even have a use for?

I said I don't think GM is calling IN to my car to get data. They might call in to get data once they know they want it. I don't think they are doing so. If I were, I could just pull the fuse.

Why do you bring up the cops with ANPR data? It's not the cops I am worried about. Because if they have a warrant they can't be stopped anyway.

I do expect plate-readers to be networked and cross-referenced. Companies will run large systems. The government will contract with them to at the very least track traffic. Companies would love this data too. I expect the readers will be pointed at roads, not just parking lots.

I do not expect license plate hiding to be common. Places like Target will require you have your license plate uncovered, the excuse can be because they allow the police to enforce laws in their parking lot (which they do). I would love to see license plates that randomize daily become available, even though they would have to register your daily number with the cops each day. At least we would be able to evade all the private license plate readers, if we wish.

Re:there's no SIM slot (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#42104015)

Why would GM phone my data home? They aren't interested in the data. What would they do with it?

You are surprisingly naive. They will be collecting it looking for any way they can to monetize it. Have you not been paying attention for the last 10 years? Monetizing personal information is the biggest business model of the decade, anyone who can conceivably do it, is doing it.

I said I don't think GM is calling IN to my car to get data.

That's a distinction without a difference. Especially since the original article was all about providing an API and authentication mechanism to access the information that GM is already collecting. Did you even read the article, let me quote it: '130,000 times a day. That's how often OnStar hardware in GM cars "phones home"'

Why do you bring up the cops with ANPR data?

Because you didn't spell it out one way or the other. Since I am not a mind reader, I decided to cover all of the bases.

I do not expect license plate hiding to be common.

For a guy who gets so pissy about someone not being a mind-reader, you do a hellavu job of ignoring what I wrote - I did not say "common," I said "more common" and then I elaborated as to exactly what small subset of the population would use it.

Places like Target will require you have your license plate uncovered, the excuse can be because they allow the police to enforce laws in their parking lot (which they do)

Ok, if you want to make up laws in order to win an argument on slashdot, be my guest because its kinda funny how transparent it is. There is no law requiring the display of a license plate on private property, full-stop. Hell, no traffic laws even apply on private property - speeding, driving without a license, not even yielding right-of-way.

Re:I was thinking to buy a Volt... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091593)

You may find this [theregister.co.uk] of interest. I have no idea if their plans changed or if this is something separate.

Re:I was thinking to buy a Volt... (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#42092901)

Think site mentioned could do a lot more to protect its user's privacy as well. The detailed info page [voltstats.net] for the top ranked car gives you enough info (white diamond colour car in Arlington, VA, fully loaded spec) to figure out who the owner is with a bit of detective work. How many white Volts are there likely to be in that town?

I never want to have my vehicle hooked up online. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090797)

Too many bad things can come from it. Stealing your data is bad enough. But imagine someone spoofing a cellphone tower similar to what the police have already done (illegally) and use that to fake OnStar singles to your car to unlock the door or worse imagine some little hacker who figures out how to get access to the cars onboard systems and starts having fun by remapping the break to the gas pedal on them when they start the auto-driving cars.

Let alone when money gets involved and they are trying to target a particular person.

Just stay out of the fast lane. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090833)

Words cannot express how sick I am of idiots in a Prius
( or a Volt, or any other car which is embraced by idiots who
are delusional enough to imagine their car will save the planet )
going slowly in the fast lane on the Interstate ( which
by the way is ILLEGAL thanks to the law which requires
slower traffic to keep right ).

These thoughtless twits make driving more dangerous
for everyone when they impede the flow of traffic by refusing
to pull into the slower lanes.

If you are a Prius driver and you worship your fuel economy meter,
that's fine, but YOU DO NOT have the right to impede traffic on the
Interstate. Get the fuck out of the left lane.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (5, Funny)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#42090853)

That is the second worst poem I have ever read.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (2)

maxwell demon (590494) | about a year ago | (#42091445)

That is the second worst poem I have ever read.

I see, you've read a poem of Paula Nancy Millstone Jennings.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42092033)

no mod points so kudos instead: you are a hero of the internet

best laugh all day

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42094915)

I would've modded him up but he's already at +5.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

T.E.D. (34228) | about a year ago | (#42093645)

Usurping the great Vogon poets? No wonder the destructor fleet is on the way...

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42090951)

So, if they aren't driving a Prius, Volt, or any other car which is embraced by idiots who
are delusional enough to imagine their car will save the planet, then driving slow in the left lane is OK?

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091107)

So, if they aren't driving a Prius, Volt, or any other car which is embraced by idiots who
are delusional enough to imagine their car will save the planet, then driving slow in the left lane is OK?

No, you imbecile, it's never ok to impede traffic, regardless of the vehicle you drive.

But you already knew that.

Now shut the fuck up and go find a cock to suck.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42093039)

>But you already knew that.

Of course I did. That was the point of my comment Sherlock.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091119)

Yes. And I leave my left blinker on all the time, too. Now get off my lawn.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091083)

I don't know where you are, but if you drive your car in the carpool lane around here, and you're not driving at rush hour speeds during rush hour, you're going to get run over by at least one Prius - mine.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091323)

I just laughed so hard at the thought of a Prius running over, well, anything.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

mug funky (910186) | about a year ago | (#42091367)

simple matter of momentum.

unless you're so fat that the force exerted by a whole car (plus very heavy battery) and a full-grown driver moving at rush-hour speed is negligible to your own inertia.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091651)

Rush hour speed? You mean, approximately zero?

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

DCFusor (1763438) | about a year ago | (#42093121)

I'm a Volt owner, have onstar (you can pull the plug on that if you like, but lose things like the nice phone if you do), and hardly ever "hypermile". I didn't opt in to Voltstats, because yes, some people appear to drive downhill only to game the numbers. But not all of us: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yk6106_9IrE [youtube.com] should say enough, but I have a lot more of these that are more exciting (but longer). I drive on almost traffic-free twisty roads, where I have my choice - haul a&&, or hypermile without holding anyone up. Screw a prius - every prius owner who has ridden in or driven my Volt gets real crestfallen - and now wants a Volt, end of story. No comparison between a total econo box and a sports car, c'mon. People trade in beemer 3 series, camaros, etc for these little rockets, and are still happy over at gm-volt.com (not a GM site). Catch me if you can...and don't confuse a prius with a Volt - it's not the same world at all. Volts handle. I regularly find myself 5 lengths ahead when the lights turn green - I'm not holding anyone up, they can't catch me -

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#42094493)

People trade in beemer 3 series, camaros, etc

3 series and camaros are built like shit and people who buy them know fuck-all about cars, or want the particular style.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

vakuona (788200) | about a year ago | (#42099493)

And what do you know about cars?

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#42104231)

And what do you know about cars?

I've worked on them for twenty years, and I keep up. I've owned and maintained over 20 vehicles. I buy the factory service manuals so I can compare those too (Ford worst, Nissan best.) Etc.

Now, what do you know about... anything?

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (1)

Beyond_GoodandEvil (769135) | about a year ago | (#42095273)

People trade in beemer 3 series, camaros, etc for these little rockets,
Rocket? I think not, 8.3-9 seconds for 0 to 60? 2008 328i does that 2.3 to 3 seconds quicker. Now, I am glad people enjoy their cars, but one doesn't move to a chevy volt for the raw 0 to 60 acceleration.

Re:Just stay out of the fast lane. (2)

sudon't (580652) | about a year ago | (#42093795)

Yeah, and as a truck driver, please allow me to mention that the middle lane is not another "slow lane" - it's the passing lane for trucks, (who are restricted from the left lane), and other slower traffic. Jeez, if you want to go slow, you are perfectly free to do so, just stay to the right. But let's face it, these people know what they're doing. Few drivers are actually that clueless, and it's probably one of the few areas in their lives where they can exercise a little power and stand their ground, even if it's only to impede other drivers.

OnStart is getting old (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about a year ago | (#42090891)

TFA says they use CDMA 1x, aren't those networks being shutdown around the world, since they're getting quite old. New Zealand and Australia have already shut theirs down, replaced by WCDMA.

How long till USA follows suite? This [bgr.com] website says it's starting in 2015.

Is this going to make every single OnStar system useless without a hardware upgrade?

Re:OnStart is getting old (1)

cawpin (875453) | about a year ago | (#42092953)

The communication module in new Onstar systems is a plug-in unit. It can be changed easily. The first generation of systems will require a more involved upgrade.

Re:OnStart is getting old (1)

jeffy210 (214759) | about a year ago | (#42094301)

Already has once. I had a '01 Intrigue with OnStar that required an upgrade because it still used the old AMPS system. Plus side was it had a 3-watt transmitter (unlike the normal 0.6-watt on a cell phone) and the analog network covered damn near 99% of the US even in the middle of nowhere you'd have perfect signal. Downside was I think they wanted something like $400 to do the upgrade and I was getting rid of my car anyway.

it will happen some day (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about a year ago | (#42094889)

But these cars use Verizon, not MetroPCS. Verizon is not going to shut down CDMA 1x for a while as right now it is their only way of making calls (you cannot make calls on 3G or 4G LTE on Verizon right now).

OnStar hardware became obsolete before, my understanding is the new system uses a plug-in radio so the cars can be upgraded. Yes, it will require upgrades. Presumably if you are a continuing customer they will give you the upgrade for free.

OnStar already has versions on deck that use 3G and 4G (not sure which 4G, they didn't say), so by the time the switchover happens, many cars will already be capable, older ones still active on OnStar will have to be upgraded though.

How long (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | about a year ago | (#42090955)

With GM losing some $50,000 on each Volt that they sell, just how long will you have to worry about this? Once GM collapses, can OnStar survive very long? How many times can Obama bail them out, and will the next president be willing to continue doing so?

GM finally gets it (4, Interesting)

voss (52565) | about a year ago | (#42091051)

enviromental friendliness...who cares
saving the earth...yeah whatever
nerd bragging rights and a leaderboard with a technocar----yeah baby. ;-)

Yeah right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091207)

Oh please store my data for me! Here are my tax documents, and my children's birthdays. Here is where I will be at every second in my life.
Drink the kool-aid and join the cloud!

Clowd clown clowd clown what'cha gonna do (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42091233)

What'cha gonna do when they come for you?

Why play in the clowds with the clowns?

"rushed work on an API" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42093031)

This is not an attempt at being noble or supportive of the developer community or their customers. What the article doesn't mention is that they did so after a massive public and media backlash after they took legal action against a number of 3rd party applications their customers were using.

GM and OnStar aren't the good guys here.

GM is trying really hard with the Volt (2)

foxalopex (522681) | about a year ago | (#42093695)

In some ways the Volt is GM's flagship car so they've been very careful to make sure it works for them instead of ending up with a disaster. I suspect their support of an enthusiast interface is to encourage that goodwill continues. They have an amazingly long warranty service and free 3 years on OnStar which for the regular consumer is something very desirable. It's helped them improve their product as well as their 2013 model battery improvements were partially based on the fact that the battery pack was degrading less than they had thought. Mind you I don't see this as a privacy disaster either. VoltStats site notes they don't have free access to air pressure and a few other stats that they use to use. I'm going to be a Volt owner soon and to be honest, I'm not worried about GM collecting data on my car. It looks like it'll lead to improvements for everyone down the road. If you're wondering why you'd want one, well it's a really nice electric car and while yes I could get a Leaf, it's my only car and without a gas engine you're going to freeze in some of the -20C sub zero temperatures in Canada. It's only downside is yes, it costs a lot of money to get one. But as a nice luxury sedan which is what I see it as, it's nice.

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