The Unwired Medic

Teaching EMS providers & other public safety pros about using mobile tech to improve their practice, patient care, continuing education, scene safety, general entertainment, & productivity.

4G LTE in your car


It appears General Motors (GM) has decided the time is right to make the upgrade to 4G starting with mid-2014 vehicles. They cite that people use their smartphones an average of 2.5 hours per day and spend 15 hours per week in their vehicles and they intend to “leverage” that. Sounds to me like they intend to use OnStar to bring marketing to you through this service.

From my point of view, we have far too many distractions in the vehicle already. 4G isn’t necessary to stream audio from Pandora or Spotify (or Apple’s upcoming radio service for iOS7). 3G handles it fine. 4G will enable video streaming. That’s a no no for drivers. The current console layout in a vehicle makes it so that passenger and driver can view and access controls and media. This upgrade could benefit passengers who want to watch a movie or maybe connect to their work systems for productivity while commuting, but since the front-seat passenger doesn’t have a discreet viewing screen, it can’t legally be run while the vehicle is being driven.

I wonder if the automakers will revamp their console design to compensate for a passenger-centric experience that could maximize the use if 4G LTE?

Check out the article I learned about this from: Detroit News Article

I doubt it will be accessible for third-party installed equipment like our tablets and on-board systems for public safety, so don’t expect to see OnStar integration in our GM chassis anytime soon. Maybe they will at least offer the ability to tether your tablets and laptops, but I wouldn’t hold my breath. GM charges a pretty penny for OnStar usage.

Incidentally, this is my first post from the iPhone WordPress app. I hope you will forgive typos!

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