General Motors is looking to bring some serious connectivity to its fleet, with the veteran automaker recently partnering with telecom giant AT&T to bring 5G cellular connectivity to the company’s vehicles. The technology would be rolled out to GM’s vehicles starting from the 2024 model year.
According to a joint statement from GM and AT&T on Thursday, 5G connectivity would improve roadway coverage, speed up music and video downloads, and make over-the-air updates faster and more secure. It would also make GM’s navigation faster while making mapping and voice services better. AT&T also highlighted that the collaboration would begin to establish the foundation for enhanced autonomous driving technology.
While 5G connectivity would formally launch on GM’s 2024 model vehicles, older cars would also have access to the network. GM notes that an upgrade to 5G via an over-the-air update should be possible.
In a statement to Automotive News, Santiago Chamorro, vice president of global connected services at GM, noted that the 5G partnership with AT&T demonstrates the company’s commitment to growth through software-enabled services.
“As an in-vehicle connectivity leader, this rollout demonstrates our commitment to growth through software-enabled services and reimagining every customer touch point by enabling faster connectivity speeds to power in-vehicle voice-enabled services, navigation and apps that our customers have grown to love,” Santiago said.
Since AT&T launched its in-vehicle 4G LTE service in 2014, GM’s customers have used over 171 million GB of cellular data. This is likely to increase as GM’s lineup starts adopting 5G connectivity in the near future. Gregory Wieboldt, senior vice president of global business, industry solutions at AT&T, expressed his optimism on the GM partnership.
“By connecting millions of GM vehicles to our nationwide 5G network, we will improve the customer experience for existing services while laying the groundwork for the next wave of innovation including autonomous driving. We now connect more vehicles than any other carrier, and GM has played a critical role in our success,” Wieboldt said.