Why is it so "impossible" to upgrade analog OnStar?

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As far as I know, no other auto maker has a device like Onstar.
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Only thing I know of is just the theft protection from Lo Jack.
To integrate all of they systems that On Star as in an aftermarket product would be very involved. I just wish the price of On Star was a bit more reasonable. At $400 a year, I never renewed after the first year that was included.
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I am not familiar with that. What is it?

I am surprised there isn't an aftermarket version that can work on any car. Sure, it would be expensive, but then again, so are those in-dash DVD players. If people want it, they will buy it.

That does sound a little high, but then again, I pay around $600 ($50 or so a month) ((Canadian)) a year just for my cell phone.
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About what I pay. A cell phone and an Auto club does most of what On Star does. The airbag thing is nice, but if you look at the added cost just for that, the whole deal is pricey. They do have a $200 plan with limited features.
In the year that I had On Star, I used it twice. Once was just because it was there and they were of no help getting around a traffic jam (there was no alternate routes), the other was for some directions to a hard to find address. It was good, but not $400 good.
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I would have to agree. OnStar seems like a nice toy to have, but I can't see the point (in my case anyhow) in paying $50 a month for my cell phone, and another $30 for OnStar. I have my car insurance set up as a road-side assistance type deal. It's only a couple of extra dollars a month (literally), and they will do just about anything from driving directions, to bringing me gas (should I run out), to towing.

The only time I have ever pressed the OnStar button in a car was in a rental. My sister had been in an accident with her Grand Am, so they gave us an '04 Grand Prix as a rental. Nice car, but of course the OnStar was disabled. All we could do was press the button and speak with customer service, who couldn't do anything (such as activate the service) because it was a rental car. Wait, that was the second time. The first time was when my sister was thinking about buying her Grand Am, and GM had there "ring in to win" contest going. You go and sit in a car with the salesman at the dealership, he presses the buttons, they ask a few questions and tell you how much you have won off your new car. Using the Onstar gave me a kind of "Big Brother" worry.
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Using the Onstar gave me a kind of

I agree with you comments, except for this last one. Maybe I am enured to Big Brother, since he is everywhere nowadays.
Onstar is not something I would buy, for the same reasons you cite. Heck, I even got rid of my subscription cellphone. Bill was running me $70 per month when I retired. Got a TracFone which I use for my convenience, it is as good as or better than the subscription service, and I get by for maybe $10 per month.
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It seems they are, it doesn't it? Quite a world we live in.

A lot of people I know are switching to "Pay as you Go" type deals, where they buy a $10 card, and only use that in a month. However, then the cell phone companies just charge you full price for the phone. That's why I am stuck on a 3 year contract. It got me my $600 phone for 3 something. They always know how to get there money.
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The TracFones are available at places like WalMart for less than a hundred bucks...\ much less. The better ones have most of the bells and whistles. You have to buy a new phone card every two months to hold your number, so I buy a twenty buck card that gives me 60 minutes, just to keep the two month cycle. I have bought a much larger card which gives me enough minutes to do anything I want (and the minutes carry over...they do not expire at the two month intervals.)
Lots of people live with their phone in their ear, and this might not be good for them. Works for me.. A benefit is that the TracFone works across many different cell zones, whereas some of the dedicated ones occasionally run out of coverage.
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From what I've seen advertised, Wal-Marts lowest price for a TracFone is only $14.49
mike
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Interesting. I will have to take a look for those TracFones next time I am at WalMart, as I have never seen them before. From what you say, the closest I have seen here is the 'pay as you go' method.
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The phone is low cost if you watch for deals. Here in Canada Pay as You Go phones are about $50 on sales and the $10 monthly charge is billed automatically to my credit card. The time (billed at 29 per local minute) accumulates such that we occasionally use it for long distance to eat up the time. A 3 yr contract phone is free, but the service cost is about $30 / mth. minimum. If you use the phone a lot the contract phone is best, but for occasional use the non contract is best.
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That's a strange reason to change brands, it seem to me. Particularly when GM is the ONLY manufacture to even offer 'OnStar" Do you think Motorola, or any other any manufacture, would 'upgrade' their analog cell phones in todays digital/wireless market? LOL
mike

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If GM comes out with a neat new in-dash heads-up display with integrated road map, traffic jam monitoring, Internet streaming 3D Google-map display, etc.. I won't believe they will "support" it 5 years later. It will just go black.

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It isn't GM's fault that analog was phased out. I don't usually agree with anything Mike Hunter says, but he has a point. I have a couple of Motorola StarTac cell phones laying around, which will also be useless after the swap, and Motorola (or Bell, my cell phone service provider) isn't offering me an upgrade in the slightest. You complain that all GM would do was offer you a discount on a new car. They don't really have to do anything.

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They didn't offer any discount for a new car. If I implied that previously it was in error. They just sent a letter saying my OnStar will be useless next year and that I should consider buying one of their new models.

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My mistake. I must have been reading someone else's post when I responded to yours. Still (and with no offence towards you intended), I stand by the rest of my post.

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I do recall GM saying that they chose analog because for their purposes it was better than digital. Better coverage was one reason IIRC. I think they probably got "caught" in that they started a business just as the decision to change was made and it was too late to do anything else. Kind of like equipping every new car with a Beta tape player and a year later, "oh shit, what do we do now?"
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I remember, 'back in the day', Analog used to be much better then Digital, for the reason you just gave. You could get an Analog signal just about anywhere, whereas Digital was only starting to come in. I didn't get a pure digital cell phone until around 2 years ago.
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