Verizon Vehicle to Connect the Unconnected Cars
Verizon Communications' telematics business today unveiled Verizon Vehicle, a connected module that plugs into cars and provides internet access. Verizon Vehicle is meant to bring online services to older cars that shipped without such connections built in. The module, which plugs into a car's diagnostic port, can diagnose mechanical problems, summon tow trucks or roadside assistance, or allow a live technician to access the car's computer remotely to suggest potential fixes. Jeff Leddy, chief executive officer of Verizon Telematics, told Bloomberg that the company wanted to offer people safety and security services first, which is why the initial batch of features mirror those of OnStar. It may later add turn-by-turn navigation or concierge services. The module is compatible with some 9,000 models released since 1996. Verizon did not say how much the module and associated service will cost, but said it plans to launch Verizon Vehicle during the second quarter.
ZTE Mobley Hotspot Plugs Into Car Data Port
AT&T today announced the ZTE Mobley, a mobile hotspot for cars that connects via the OBD-II port. The Mobley is compatible with most cars model year 1996 and later and turns on automatically whenever the car is on.
T-Mobile Adds Free Roadside Assistance to SyncUp Drive
T-Mobile today improved the appeal of its SyncUp Drive product by adding access to Allstate Motor Club. T-Mobile is updating the mobile app that accompanies its in-car diagnostics and mobile hotspot tool to include free roadside assistance.
T-Mobile's SyncUP Drive Creates In-Car Hotspot
T-Mobile today introduced the SyncUP Drive, a plug-in device for cars that provides connectivity as well as safety and analytics tools. The SyncUP Drive plugs into most cars' OBD-II port and can be used to generate an in-car, rolling hotspot for keeping WiFi devices connected through T-Mobile's LTE network.
Verizon Wants You To Rattle Along with Its New Hum Devices
Verizon today announced a revamp of its Hum line of connected car devices. Moving forward, consumers can choose one of three new options to keep their car in touch with Verizon's network.
Google Maps Improves Parking Spot Finder
Google has this week made good on previous promises to make it easier for people to locate their cars after parking them. Maps for Android and iOS is being updated with a dedicated "Save Your Parking" tool that lets people not only pinpoint the location of their car on a map, but add details such as floor level, section, or parking spot for large parking structures.
Many car makers