GM and IBM Watson Partner on New Vehicle Mobility Platform


Detroit-based General Motors Co. and New York-based IBM are partnering to bring the auto industry’s first cognitive mobility platform — OnStar Go — to the market early next year.

Using OnStar’s vehicle connectivity and data capabilities, combined with advanced passenger information from IBM Watson’s artificial intelligence platform, OnStar Go will offer drivers new experiences.

Services that could be ordered or provided via a vehicle dashboard include low fuel warnings along with directing drivers to the nearest gas station; avoiding traffic; paying for fuel via the dashboard; ordering a cup of coffee and having it ready at a coffee shop drive thru; or getting news and in-vehicle entertainment tailored to an individual’s personality and location in real time.

With a customer’s consent, IBM Watson will learn the driver’s preferences, apply machine learning, and sift through data to recognize patterns in their decisions and habits. The information will allow brand and marketing professionals working with IBM and OnStar to deliver interactions.

“On average, people in the U.S. spend more than 46 minutes per day in their car and are looking for ways to optimize their time,” says Phil Abram, executive director of GM Connected Products and Strategy. “By leveraging OnStar’s connectivity and combining it with the power of Watson, we’re looking to provide safer, simpler, and better solutions to make our customers’ mobility experience more valuable and productive.”

He says capabilities of the platform will be available in more than 2 million 4G LTE connected vehicles and millions of GM vehicle brand app-enabled mobile devices in the U.S. by the end of 2017.

Companies in retail, fuel, hospitality, media and entertainment, restaurants, travel and transportation, and more can use OnStar Go to build individualized mobile, in-vehicle experiences for connected drivers that opt-in to the platform.

ExxonMobil, Glympse, iHeartRadio, Mastercard, and Parkopedia are the first brands to join OnStar Go.

The cognitive mobility platform was designed and developed by IBM iX in conjunction with OnStar. IX is also working with GM to design OnStar’s intuitive, touch screen interfaces for consumers on the go.

By the end of 2016, GM expects to have 12 million OnStar connected vehicles on the road worldwide.