At the Consumer Electronics Show slated for January 2012, OnStar is geared up to introduce a system that will bring video chat and streaming content to select vehicles in the General Motors fleet thanks to mobile broadband service from Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network. The new system will find home in the Chevy Volt.
It’s unclear how embedded the solutions for mobile Internet access for in-vehicle use will be, or if OnStar will be using off-the-shelf solutions in the form of mobile hotspots, such as those from Novatel’s MiFi range or the Samsung Mobile Hotspot unit, which pulls in a 4G LTE Internet connection and broadcasts it over WiFi to nearby devices.
In a teaser sent before the CES show starts, OnStar is showing off its rear-seat infotainment system which includes 2 hardwired tablets situated on the rear of the front seat headrests. The company says that safety is also a focus and front-seat access to video chat will be limited to when the vehicle is stationary, though rear seat passengers through their own mounted tablets can chat, stream, and have access to an array of content whether the car is moving or not.
While OnStar’s solution may look elegant, users wishing to replicate the experience can achieve similar results with other third-party solutions. Users can either purchase an Android or iPad tablet, a compatible headrest mount through a third-party (I would recommend going through ProClipUSA.com for their well-made solutions), and a 4G LTE MiFi or Samsung mobile hotspot. The Skype video chat app is freely available in Android Market or through the App Store and users can have access to movies, apps, and additional content available within the respective applications stores. Users doing their own DIY solution won’t have access to OnStar’s service, however.
Via: Motor Authority