Monday, August 15, 2011

Blogher Review: OnStar FMV

I am a huge fan of The Celebrity Apprentice, are you? Last season one of my favorite episodes was when the contestants were challenged to create and film a commercial for OnStar's new service, FMV. When I had the chance to try out OnStar FMV for myself, I of course jumped at the chance. In the past, OnStar was only available on GM vehicles as a pre-installed feature, but FMV stands for "For My Vehicle," which means that many different makes and years of vehicles can now enjoy OnStar service, even my Honda Ridgeline.

The technology comes in a rear-view mirror, with buttons to connect you with everything from directions to emergency response, and even to make hands-free phone calls.

I was excited to see the box arrive on my doorstep, and after opening the box, was pleasantly surprised. I had expected the mirror itself to be fairly bulky and wondered if it would be an eyesore, but it is actually only a touch larger than my previous mirror, and once installed, looked right at home in my truck.

As you know, I have two little boys, ages 2 and almost 4, who are my pint-sized back seat drivers.

Heaven forbid an emergency would happen while I'm driving, Automatic Crash Response can automatically alert an OnStar Advisor if I’ve been in a crash, even if I'm unable to respond. In more common "emergencies," OnStar can send someone to unlock my doors or to change a flat tire, and I can even make a phone call when I've left my cell at home. If you know me, you know these features will be well used :).

Our previous GPS unit had a touch screen, with a map to view directions, and since FMV uses voice-only directions, that's one feature I was sure I would miss. However, the first time I pressed the blue button to find directions, I instantly enjoyed that I didn't have to put the address in by hand like my old GPS directions required. 

If I'm looking for a new quilt shop, I can let the advisor know the name and city and they'll look up the address for me and get me on my way - so convenient! I can push the button as I'm pulling out of my driveway and not waste any time fiddling with a touch screen.

Joel and I have been married for 7 1/2 years, and in that time have lived in 6 different states and one province! If only I had FMV's turn-by-turn navigation 7 years ago, it would have made the many moves so much easier, from finding the closet grocery store, to travelling from state to state. We will be moving to Washington (hello, state number 7) in the upcoming months, and I can't say how excited I am to have my new best friends to keep me from getting lost at every turn!

Although I love having a real live person at my fingertips whenever I need directions or help, one difficulty I have with OnStar is keeping Wyatt and Weston quiet enough in the background while I'm speaking with an OnStar Advisor. I can't say I blame them though, I'm sure the friendly voices in our vehicle are a bit strange to them! I'm sure they'll get bored of it soon enough and stop feeling the need to join in on the conversation :). Fingers crossed...

I'm thrilled with the Directions and Connections plan that I have, but if you're only looking for emergency type care, they also have a more limited (and more economical) Safe and Sound plan available.

I have to say that I really do feel more safe and secure with OnStar FMV in my truck. I love the turn-by-turn navigation, and have already made use of the hands-free calling, but the piece of mind that comes with knowing that my family and I will be taken care of in an emergency is priceless.

Visit the Facebook page to learn more about OnStar FMV, and visit your local Best Buy to get one for yourself! You can also read other reviewers' reviews by visiting the Prizes and Promotions section at Blogher!


Kelly said...

I had not heard of this! Thanks so much for the review!

James and Jax blog said...

This would definitely make me feel safer, especially driving at night, with or without my kiddo!

Lisa said...

i totally want one :) i'm bummed my SUV isn't compatible....but when it's time to upgrade to something bigger...i'll make sure it is!

Sabra said...

You're moving!?!? We have to get together before you do. My did lives in WA, but I hardly ever get up there.