In a recent press release, GM’s OnStar company (a provider of emergency communications and other connected vehicle services) adopted a new, simpler logo and expanded their services beyond vehicles with two new services.
“OnStar’s new identity and logo kicks off a new era for the brand and how we are innovating to make our promise of safety and security available to more people,” said Jeff Massimilla, vice president of OnStar Safety and Connectivity at GM. “These latest expansions, as well as our work with the public safety community to advance new technologies, illustrate how GM is delivering on its promise to becoming a software innovator and building on our subscription services expertise.”
New OnStar Logo
The new logo for the company is basically just the old one, but with the word “Star” removed and a decorative ring around the “On*” portion removed. In many ways, this makes sense, as the stylized part of the logo already has a star in it. So, no meaning is really lost. The company thinks of the logo change as a simplification (which is true), but I’m not sure it will seem that different to potential customers. But, this is probably a good thing because anybody will recognize the logo and know what company it’s referring to.
So, sometimes it’s a good idea to stick with what already works, and only change as needed. This also gave GM room to regularly include the company’s slogan.
New Ways To “Be Safe Out There”
OnStar (or, is it On* now?) didn’t just change its logo. It’s doing three new things with two services that allow more ways for people to be safer outside of cars.
For one, there’s now a phone app for OnStar called OnStar Guardian. This service has been allowing anyone with a smartphone to get help from OnStar advisers, which takes the service out of OnStar-equipped vehicles and expands it almost everywhere. But, that wasn’t good enough, because OnStar still wasn’t available in all vehicles.
OnStar Guardian is extending access to motorcyclists, who can now use the service 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Emergency Advisors and customized Roadside Assistance are also available to all OnStar Guardian Members in the United States and Canada. Using the OnStar app, riders will now be able to:
- Use smartphone sensors to detect when a Member is riding or driving and can determine when a change in acceleration occurs, signaling a crash.
- Notify an OnStar Emergency Advisor, who can triage a situation, contact first responders and provide medical assistance until help arrives.
- Provide roadside assistance for Members who own motorcycles, including help when they need gas, a jump or a tow.
We don’t know whether the service (especially the crash detection) will work with lower speed micromobility, but that would definitely be a good thing for people on two wheels and not a motorcycle.
They also announced one other thing: an OnStar Guardian skill for Amazon Alexa. It’s available to all Guardian Members in the US with a compatible Alexa-enabled device. This Alexa skill can help:
- Members can instantly reach OnStar Emergency Certified Advisors, hands-free by saying, “Alexa, call for help.”
- Ongoing expansion of services to GM and non-GM customers at home.
- Impeccable timing and assistance during in-home emergencies.
In stressful situations, having voice-controlled access to emergency services instead of needing to work a smartphone is great. When you’re shaking from adrenaline, fine muscle skills go to crap. Being able to “call for help” is great.
Featured image provided by GM.
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