Facebook Audio Updates Coming to GM's OnStar
General Motors said it is testing Facebook audio updates for its OnStar platform. Spoken Web input is a big deal.General Motors, which is battling Ford in the market for Web-enabled communications via motor vehicles, confirmed it is testing Facebook audio updates for its OnStar roadside assistance and navigation platform. The experimental social media application would allow OnStar subscribers to verbally update their Facebook status and listen to their most recent news feed messages by speaking into their GM vehicle's OnStar Virtual Advisor, OnStar Communications Vice President Jocelyn Allen told eWEEK Sept. 8.
"OnStar is currently testing various technologies that support responsible connectivity," Allen said. "All of our technologies are rigorously evaluated prior to launch."
Final approval of the experimental voice input technologies depends on whether they satisfy GM customers. "OnStar has always operated on the premise that while the possibilities of technological innovation are endless, the company will not implement a new service simply because it's technically feasible, it has to be the right thing to do for the customer," Allen said. That isn't getting in the way of OnStar's new advertising campaign, which will launch soon to help the company "connect with our customers." OnStar is battling Ford's Synch software, which is powered by Microsoft, in the market for Web-enabled communications in motor vehicles. Ford and OnStar both allow drivers to e-mail directions from Google Maps using their mobile phones to certain motor vehicles.