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Discussion Starter #1
So before I drove off from the dealership in Chicago, the young Tech girl spent about an hour going over all the buttons, bells and whistles. All was good and she ended with On Star. She went over everything, even had a trial call to show how it works. Then I asked her what plan she recommended? I was figuring the most expensive but was shocked when she said, "None of them. Biggest waste of money you could spend!". Wow, I thought. I said why? She explained there are problems with the hotspot being too slow and said the hotspot on your phone (which you are already paying for is faster). Also said the cars navigation and your phone's is more advanced than On Star's. The convincer was when she said that even though you are not paying for the accident/stranded service, that by law they have to answer and send help to ANY distress/stranded call. Oh my. Any of you using it?
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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I still use the most basic, primitive plan for the 2002 STS - but it's essentially useless, archaic, and easily the most hideously expensive cell phone on earth.

A $129 Garmin 5" dash mount GPS is more accurate, faster, and has free lifetime map updates - and you can take it anywhere.
 

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'18 Escalade ESV Platinum
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85 Posts
I pay $12/month for the remote access plan with the app for remote start, lock/unlock, location, tire pressure, oil life, and tripometer.
It's quite useful and cheap.
 

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CT6 & Escalade
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239 Posts
I pay $12/month for the remote access plan with the app for remote start, lock/unlock, location, tire pressure, oil life, and tripometer.
It's quite useful and cheap.
Same here. I just want the bare minimum to be able to remotely start my car.
 

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2016 Escalade ESV, 2017 GMC Sierra 6.2
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1,465 Posts
I have it on my GMC for the WIFI hotspot and the cell phone remote start.
We did a 17 hour road trip vacation last spring (and several multi-hour smaller trips) and the kids used their tablets on the WIFI. We also occasionally used the in-car WIFI with our cellphones when our cellphones could not pickup a good cell signal.
The advantage the Onstar WIFI has over the cell phone is the antenna. The Onstar uses a 3 watt cell antenna and the cell phone uses something like a 0.5watt antenna. Onstar can pickup a weak cell signal when the phone can’t. It’s like having a cell phone signal booster.
 

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2016 Escalade
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8 Posts
So before I drove off from the dealership in Chicago, the young Tech girl spent about an hour going over all the buttons, bells and whistles. All was good and she ended with On Star. She went over everything, even had a trial call to show how it works. Then I asked her what plan she recommended? I was figuring the most expensive but was shocked when she said, "None of them. Biggest waste of money you could spend!". Wow, I thought. I said why? She explained there are problems with the hotspot being too slow and said the hotspot on your phone (which you are already paying for is faster). Also said the cars navigation and your phone's is more advanced than On Star's. The convincer was when she said that even though you are not paying for the accident/stranded service, that by law they have to answer and send help to ANY distress/stranded call. Oh my. Any of you using it?
I have no use for it. Have never paid for it in any GM car I've had. It is true that the WIFI is slow. I never knew why but when I would run speed tests on it, it was always much slower than my phone. It was so frustratingly slow that I shut it off and if I need a hotspot, I enable it on my phone. On Star directions is another feature I don't see the need for. Even if you have a car with no Nav built in, you're phone nav will get you there most likely in a more efficient manner.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have no use for it. Have never paid for it in any GM car I've had. It is true that the WIFI is slow. I never knew why but when I would run speed tests on it, it was always much slower than my phone. It was so frustratingly slow that I shut it off and if I need a hotspot, I enable it on my phone. On Star directions is another feature I don't see the need for. Even if you have a car with no Nav built in, you're phone nav will get you there most likely in a more efficient manner.
Wait a minute, were you my saleslady? Ha
 

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All Escalade Premiums, '16 ESV, '13 ESV, '10 EXT
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WiFi hotspot is completely useless, I have an Android phone so have a one press hotspot widget on my homescreen I engage if I need it, however the remote access package is amazing especially in Arizona- getting ready to leave a restaurant at 2PM in August at 120* out? Remote start and get into a nice cold car with cooled seats :)
 

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2016 Escalade ESV, 2017 GMC Sierra 6.2
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I’m going to have to run a WIFI hotspot speed test on my ‘17 GMC. I had two kids on two tablets on Youtube for hours with no speed issues.
 

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2013 XTS & 2016 Escalade
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20 Posts
Can't say it's worth the subscription rates year round, but living in Michigan, I might subscribe during the winter to use the cell phone remote start functionality, especially when traveling a lot for work. I've also been known to reactivate the service when Onstar offers a promotional rate for a few months, but would never keep it year round at regular rates because (for me at least) it's useless during the summer.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Can't say it's worth the subscription rates year round, but living in Michigan, I might subscribe during the winter to use the cell phone remote start functionality, especially when traveling a lot for work. I've also been known to reactivate the service when Onstar offers a promotional rate for a few months, but would never keep it year round at regular rates because (for me at least) it's useless during the summer.
So if people subscribe for the remote start capabilities, I don't get it. Don't we already have remote start? Is it just that the range is too small?
 

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'18 Escalade ESV Platinum
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85 Posts
So if people subscribe for the remote start capabilities, I don't get it. Don't we already have remote start? Is it just that the range is too small?
yes -- if you're too far away or in a building, you have time for it to warm up or cool down and the app let's you know it's started.
 

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2016 Escalade ESV, 2017 GMC Sierra 6.2
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Can't say it's worth the subscription rates year round, but living in Michigan, I might subscribe during the winter to use the cell phone remote start functionality, especially when traveling a lot for work. I've also been known to reactivate the service when Onstar offers a promotional rate for a few months, but would never keep it year round at regular rates because (for me at least) it's useless during the summer.
I’m kind of the opposite. I get the unlimited WIFI for my family’s summer road trips and turn it off for the winter. And if I’m not mistaken, I think the free Basic Onstar remote start app still functions for a while after not paying for one of the Onstar plans.
 

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18 ESV Pemium &18 XT5 Premium
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70 Posts
I've got the unlimited WIFI and the remote key. I enjoy both. I put a Firestick in the back for the kids and I work from home (anywhere with WIFI). I have no complaints on several long trips with me on my laptop, kids streaming and wife driving. Helluva a lot cheaper than paying Verizon for the 50 GB a month my kids eat.
 

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2018 Escalade
2018 Escalade 4WD
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33 Posts
I pay 15 a month for unlimited wifi connection. On trips everyone is on a tablet streaming movies, texting etc and usually my son works on his computer all the way to where we go so he doesn't have to take the travel day off. I use it when I need to look for something on my tablet while not driving. As for the Onstar I pay the minimum, what ever it was because I get a huge insurance discount for the theft tracing capability it's suppose to to have, but has received horrible reviews. Other than that I totally dislike Onstar. With WAZE also I don't even use the map function that comes with the truck.I've had onstar in my 2001 Denali, in my 2009 Denali and now in this Escalde ( 2018 ) have disliked it since day 1!. Instead I love the unlimited wifi for 15 bucks a month and my sirius subscription and that's about 10 or so a month.
 

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2016 Escalade ESV, 2017 GMC Sierra 6.2
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I’m going to have to run a WIFI hotspot speed test on my ‘17 GMC. I had two kids on two tablets on Youtube for hours with no speed issues.
Onstar WiFI ran 12.4 mbps down, 1.5 mbps up.
My 4GLTE iPhone ran 3.1 mbps down, 0.4 mbps up.
My cable internet WIFI in my house ran 65.5 mbps up, 10.5 mbps down.

The Onstar WIFI ran typical 4GLTE internet speeds from what I can tell in a google search.
My phone must have a weak signal here in my living room.
 
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