Chevrolet is adding a new level of infotainment personalization with Chevrolet AppShop, demonstrated today at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show. AppShop will be available this summer on select 2015 models in the U.S. and Canada with MyLink technology, including the Corvette, Equinox, Impala, Malibu, Volt, Silverado and Silverado HD.
Chevrolet AppShop is accessible through an icon displayed on the available MyLink screen that allows owners to view all available apps and download them directly to the vehicle, then organize, update or delete them. Available apps will connect drivers to music, news, weather, travel information, vehicle data and more.
“We listen to our customers, and they want more choices like they have with their smartphones,” said Alan Batey, senior vice president of Global Chevrolet. “They’re telling us they want more integration, more options, and more control in a safe manner. Chevrolet AppShop is an in-vehicle information resource that allows our drivers to customize and refine their experiences from their Chevrolet.”
A seamless data connection for Chevrolet AppShop will be offered with the brand’s broad deployment of high-speed 4G LTE connectivity through OnStar, General Motors’ telematics service that has provided wireless connections to vehicles for more than 17 years. Every Chevrolet with AppShop will come equipped with OnStar 4G LTE hardware with data plans available at an additional charge.
Chevrolet AppShop should help keep smartphones in pockets. Features that require a large amount of attention – such as those that use a keyboard – are unavailable while the vehicle is in motion. While some apps may be familiar to owners, the functionality of these apps may vary between AppShop and a smartphone. For example, The Weather Channel offers audible five-day forecasts to help keep the driver’s eyes on the road.
“At General Motors, we are trying to minimize driver distractions through the use of technology,” said Phil Abram, chief infotainment officer, GM Global Connected Consumer. “In addition to AppShop, Chevrolet offers features like text-to-voice and smartphone voice pass-through integration to create a safer driving environment.”
Among the apps Chevrolet demonstrated at CES is a Vehicle Health App that’s expected to be available for customers by the end of 2014. This app uses vehicle data to provide on-demand diagnostic reports and maintenance notifications, and also provides contact information, appointment scheduling and, on properly equipped vehicles, navigation routing to the owner’s preferred dealer. The Vehicle Health App builds on the OnStar Vehicle Diagnostics and RemoteLink smartphone app already offered through OnStar.
Here is an initial list of the other planned apps:
iHeartRadio (U.S. Only): Offers instant access to more than 1,500 of the nation’s most popular live radio stations from anywhere in the United States, plus Custom Stations inspired by an artist or song. A Favorites menu allows easy access to stations saved across any iHeartRadio-enabled device.
Priceline.com: Allows search, comparison, and booking of a hotel room. With more than 200,000 hotels from which to choose, this app gives travelers the freedom to experience a little more and go a little farther because a place to stay the night is always just a few touches away.
The Weather Channel: Provides visual and audible weather information needed along a driver’s route, including current conditions, hourly and five-day forecasts.
NPR: News, culture and humor from NPR and 900-plus public radio stations nationwide, including live broadcasts and more than 80 all-music streams. Uses vehicle location to automatically localize listening to the nearest NPR member station.
Slacker Radio: Handcrafted internet radio service with more than 13 million songs, plus news, sports, comedy and weather. Playlists can be synchronized with a smartphone, tablet or web browser.
TuneIn Radio: Expands in-car radio listening to more than 100,000 radio stations and more than 2 million podcasts streaming from every continent, including sports, news, talk and music.
Cityseeker: A car concierge that provides relevant and personalized information about attractions, museums, restaurants, nightlife and shopping based on a vehicle’s location.
Eventseeker: Seek, share and live with personalized information about events, concerts, sporting events, festivals, performing arts, family-friendly activities and more. Never miss an event again.
Glympse: The pioneer of temporary, person-to-person location sharing. Allows a driver to share real-time movement with anyone, including speed and estimated arrival time.
Kaliki: A spoken-word news and entertainment app that delivers up-to-the-minute headlines, traffic, sports, weather and marquee episodic content from North America’s leading publishers, broadcasters and producers.
AppShop will be standard on properly equipped Chevrolets with MyLink technology. The apps above would all be free to download with an active data plan.