OnStar - Worthwhile?

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Just bought a car with OnStar. Activated the free trial, and the attendant was trying to talk me into their phone service minutes. Interestingly, tried to sell that based on the scenario where my phone battery is dead (I have a car charger). It did e-mail me to tell me the car is due for the 100,000 mile service (oh, joy), but all diagnostics report OK. I'm thinking I'll just turn it off after the trial period. I don't see me using it it for phone service or directions when my smart phone already does those things. If OnStar reported a problem, then wouldn't these same problems also trigger check engine lights, air bag warning lights, or other lights?
 
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We had a 6 or 9 month free trial when we bought our Cruze, I think the most usage it saw was when one of us hit the button adjusting the rear view mirror. If you do want it, you'll probably get some steep discount if you let the service lapse for a few months, I recall getting offers in the mail.
 
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Probably. Although OnStar can email you when you need service! You know, in case you couldn't read the dashboard. Coworker likes having it, but he only subscribes when it's on sale (he'll go for a month or two w/o, then they will drop the price, at least they did in the past). I think it's paid off for him, couple of locked out incidents. I think for most people on BITOG though it's probably not of much value.
 
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Originally Posted By: Dave Sherman
I'm thinking I'll just turn it off after the trial period. I don't see me using it it for phone service or directions when my smart phone already does those things. If OnStar reported a problem, then wouldn't these same problems also trigger check engine lights, air bag warning lights, or other lights?
I had a number of GM cars that had Onstar. I kept the service and phone minutes for a couple of years after the trial period expired. The only thing that kept me paying the monthly fees was that my wife was doing a long commute and wanted the automatic crash notification feature. Also, I found the built in phone had better coverage (verizon) than my cell phone (Tmobile), but that's not surprising. Don't have any GM cars now and don't miss it. My cell phone coverage has gotten better in the last year and don't feel a need to have a back up phone built into the car. All things considered it's not worthwhile.
 
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Yes, I think so. I keep it active on all three of our GM cars. The phone has better range than a handheld cell phone, at least around here. I prefer having an onboard NAV readout to a cwell phone, plus it is basically hands off, since you are talking to a person through the phone. IF you get a DTC, you can call OnStar and they can tell you what it is. Roadside emergency service. Remote door opening ( comes in handy when wife locks herself out ). A lot of other little features. I like the service, personally.
 
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I have it on the Cobalt and have kept it active since I bought the vehicle, but my motivation is different; since the Cobalt is my toy, I get a low-mileage break from State Farm due to letting OnStar report my mileage to them to verify that the vehicle is actually a low-mileage vehicle. the discount I get from State Farm more than pays for the OnStar subscription. Of course, YMMV.
 
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OnStar is going to have to give up the idea of existing with a built in customer base and become more competitive in the market place. It's a matter of what they want to do. They have the capability of doing anything that modern technology allows.
 
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Originally Posted By: opus1
I have it on the Cobalt and have kept it active since I bought the vehicle, but my motivation is different; since the Cobalt is my toy, I get a low-mileage break from State Farm due to letting OnStar report my mileage to them to verify that the vehicle is actually a low-mileage vehicle. the discount I get from State Farm more than pays for the OnStar subscription. Of course, YMMV.
Off topic but... how long have you been doing that with State Farm and any complaints? I had heard about it a few years ago but we drive to much annually for it to make sense for us. At the time, I was curious at that time if at some point this will move away from just mileage and also capture driving style and adjust your premium according (doesn't look like that has happened though).
 
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I cancel onstar after the free period. My single daughter keeps it, as she travels a lot. New GM cars let you use The remote lock for 5 years for free. You would not get specific failure, but the check engine light would come on.
 
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Originally Posted By: 99Saturn
Originally Posted By: opus1
I have it on the Cobalt and have kept it active since I bought the vehicle, but my motivation is different; since the Cobalt is my toy, I get a low-mileage break from State Farm due to letting OnStar report my mileage to them to verify that the vehicle is actually a low-mileage vehicle. the discount I get from State Farm more than pays for the OnStar subscription. Of course, YMMV.
Off topic but... how long have you been doing that with State Farm and any complaints? I had heard about it a few years ago but we drive to much annually for it to make sense for us. At the time, I was curious at that time if at some point this will move away from just mileage and also capture driving style and adjust your premium according (doesn't look like that has happened though).
3 years, I think. So far so good, i.e., rates haven't gone up due to any, uh, spirited driving. If that changes, I may have to rethink the arrangement. Only hiccup so far is that OnStar expects the vehicle to "check in" for the diagnostic e-mail around the same day of the month, with a bit of a window before and after that date. I missed the window once and instead of cancelling the request and catching me next month, the missed check-in just sat there and kind of died, and the request the next month just sat and waited for the first one to get out of the way. I think after the third month, State Farm opened a trouble ticket with OnStar, who in turn e-mailed me asking me to contact them so they could fix the problem. The technician had to clear out the request queue for my vehicle and at the next start-up, all went as planned and State Farm got their info.
 
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Meh don't see the point. When I get a new truck the Onstar along with GM's lame screen in the center of the dash is coming out and a nice aftermarket GPS unit is going in, and GM's speakers are going in the trash right behind it.
 
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