GM: 4G LTE Next Big Thing for Auto Industry
Could an automobile rival an iPhone in connectivity? GM’s (NYSE:GM) chief executive doesn’t think it’s out of the question, and said the automaker has big plans for expanding mobile Internet service in the company’s cars and trucks. GM has a deal in place to bring 4G LTE service to its models and lead the industry by as early as summer 2014.
CEO Dan Akerson told the crowd at the Chief Executives’ Club of Boston that GM already has an advantage with its OnStar technology in place, according to The Detroit News. He noted that two-thirds of car buyers own smartphones, and that mobile access is increasingly important to that group. He also mentioned people are spending more time on smartphones than they are driving cars, so the overlap is ideal for drivers.
“Marry the two and we have a megatrend that we intend to harvest for competitive advantage,” Akerson said. To pull off the feat in a way that distances GM from the competition, the company plans to use its deal with AT&T (NYSE:T) to advantage, as well as OnStar’s features that connect cars with security services. The increase in profits suggested for 4G upgrades in GM cars is staggering, with estimates of the profit boost in the hundreds of millions.