Light Reading
Owners of select GM cars can get LTE connectivity for only $10 per month as part of AT&T's Mobile Share data plans, as the carrier experiments with connected-car pricing models.

AT&T Makes GM Cars a Data Plan Add-On

Sarah Reedy
5/12/2014
50%
50%

Your car could soon be just another "device" on your Mobile Share plan, if you're an AT&T customer and happen to own a GM vehicle.

The carrier announced on Monday that it would soon begin supporting LTE on select GM cars as a $10 add-on to AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) Mobile Share data plans. That's the same cost as a smartphone or a tablet addition, and it'll give drivers 200 MBytes of additional data.

If more data is needed, which will likely be the case with the intensive apps that will run in the car, customers can opt to select from a range of plans including $20 for 1 GB of data, $30 for 3 GB, or $50 for 5 GB.

GM is running the service through its OnStar service, which turns the car into a WiFi hotspot capable of connecting up to seven devices. OnStar customers will get a three-month free trial with LTE and then have the option to sign up for a new plan, with a $5 discount on the 200 MB or 1GB plan. Or, as further options, GM is also letting drivers buy day passes of 250 MB for $5 or a year's worth of data at 10 GB per month for $200 -- $150 if you're an OnStar customer.

The connectivity option will first be available on the 2015 Chevrolet Malibu, followed by more than 30 other Chevy, Buick, Cadillac, and GMC models before the end of the year.

Why this matters
In-car connectivity is still a relatively new market, and AT&T is emerging as the market leader in bringing LTE to the open road. Its business model has been a question mark, but it's clear the carrier is willing to experiment with all kinds of options to see what sticks. With Audi, it's offering data plans in six-month or 30-month increments, betting that customers don't want to deal with it every month. With GM, it looks as if anything goes. What consumers opt for, if anything, once a free trial is up, will be good learnings for the entire machine-to-machine communications market.

Related posts:

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(7)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
denzer900
50%
50%
denzer900,
User Rank: Light Beer
5/13/2014 | 3:09:30 PM
Re: Can cars share?
Got that right. Question is who is the chip supplier to GM ?
Atlantis-dude
50%
50%
Atlantis-dude,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/13/2014 | 2:08:04 PM
WiFi Hotspot/Tether
It certainly simplifies. The question is whether the pricing is right.
Ariella
50%
50%
Ariella,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/13/2014 | 8:46:02 AM
Re: Can cars share?
@Sarah I'm with you on that. I like to just be set and forget about it. With our home phone, we had a limit that my daughter started to exceed every month, sometimes doubling our phone bill. So we upgraded to unlimited. 
Ariella
50%
50%
Ariella,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/13/2014 | 8:41:15 AM
Re: I like Tesla's wireless plan better...
@mhhf1ve speaking of Tesla, I just heard this morning that Toyota is dropping its partnership with the electric car producer in favor of exploring hydrogen fuel cells. I don't know if that will have any impact on AT&T's business, though. 
mhhf1ve
50%
50%
mhhf1ve,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/12/2014 | 9:04:56 PM
I like Tesla's wireless plan better...
I think Tesla also uses AT&T for its cars.. but the mobile plan is included with the car. I guess that's what you get when your car costs >$100K..?
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
5/12/2014 | 4:16:49 PM
Can cars share?
My concern with putting my car on my family plan is that it would eat up all the data so fast that no one else could get any. I think I'd prefer to pay all at once for a year or just bundle it in with the car purchase and forget about it.
mendyk
100%
0%
mendyk,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/12/2014 | 4:14:57 PM
Money sticks
This is kind of what I don't like about first-gen "connected car" initiatives so far as a consumer: They feel like cynical money grabs (a.k.a. ancillary revenue streams) with not much else behind them. I really don't need to pay the automaker or a mobile carrier extra for stuff I can already get with my phone.
Flash Poll
From The Founder
Is your network built on 'The Old IP,' or are you part of 'The New IP' revolution?
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Innovating Access Technology With G.fast

10|1|14   |   3.42   |   (0) comments


Exploring the potential of G.fast technology from the point of view of the Broadband Forum, Huawei – and an end-user.
LRTV Documentaries
A Cultural Shift for an OTT World

9|26|14   |   01:41   |   (3) comments


Telcos need to embrace a new approach to partnerships if they are to generate extra revenues quickly and give customers what they want.
LRTV Documentaries
New Skills Needed as Telecom, IT Collide

9|26|14   |   4:07   |   (1) comment


As telecom and IT collide, new technologies are emerging, new skills are needed and new opportunities for women are arising.
UBB Forum News
Do IP Networks Need An Overhaul?

9|25|14   |   02:01   |   (0) comments


As traffic levels ramp, do IP networks need new technologies and topologies?
LRTV Documentaries
Sprint Wields Its Influence in the Valley

9|25|14   |   3:09   |   (11) comments


Anne-Louise Kardas, Sprint's connection to startups in the Valley, explains how telcos can be innovative and find new opportunities with partners.
LRTV Documentaries
SDN, NFV & The Future of XO's Network

9|25|14   |   3:47   |   (1) comment


XO Communications COO Don MacNeil explains how cloud, SDN and NFV are altering its network requirements as well as changing data centers of the future.
UBB Forum News
The OTT Conundrum

9|24|14   |   01:39   |   (0) comments


What is holding back prosperous partnerships between telcos and the OTT players?
LRTV Documentaries
Putting Broadband to Work

9|24|14   |   01:26   |   (0) comments


High-speed broadband network rollout is key to telco strategies, but it's what happens after the network is built that counts.
Light Reedy
Light Reading's Women in Telecom Recap

9|24|14   |   0:55   |   (4) comments


Our first Women in Telecom breakfast was a huge success, and we hope you'll join us in London for the next event on November 6.
UBB Forum News
Monetizing Ultra-Broadband

9|24|14   |   01:43   |   (2) comments


Ultra-broadband networks need to be built, with fiber-to-the-premises the ultimate goal, but they need to be monetized, too.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sales Director of INIT on Plug & Play Switch Devices

9|19|14   |   3:21   |   (0) comments


INIT Italy uses both the Huawei S5700 and S7700 series switches for the campus LAN environment. Sales Director Andrea Curti says their company chose these Huawei devices over others because of their performance, flexible scalability and plug-and-play features.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Saudi Arabia Upgrades Vocational Training System

9|19|14   |   3:31   |   (0) comments


The Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) has 100,000 students, 150 government-owned institutions and oversees 1000 private institutes. The CIO of TVTC explains that Huawei devices have allowed them to manage multiple datacenters using just one software program, scientifically tracking the progress of students and teachers, saving them millions.
Upcoming Live Events
October 29, 2014, New York City
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Half of the world's population will be connected to the Internet by 2017, but not just by smartphones and desktops.
Hot Topics
Facebook Pokes Around LTE Direct
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/25/2014
Is Redbox Instant Shutting Down?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/30/2014
Sprint Wields Its Influence in the Valley
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/25/2014
US Ignite Cultivates Gigabit Apps
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Utility Communications/IoT, 9/25/2014
SoftBank Eyes a DreamWorks Buy – Report
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/29/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed