Based in Detroit, Michigan, General Motors has announced plans to soon deploy an Apple Watch app that could lock and unlock cars remotely; and even start the engines if the owner cares to.
The automaker is currently testing the app, and they may soon be available in the market for interested buyers to acquire, but it is not clear at this moment if it will come with select brands of new cars.
General Motors’ vice president of strategy, Mike Ableson, demonstrated the use of the app during an analyst presentation, making it clear that the company is dedicated to getting the product out into the hands of users as soon as can be managed.
According to GM, the app will enable users to manage the possible threats posed by electric cars and autonomous cars currently made by Tesla, Apple, and Google among other top automakers.
Meanwhile, the company also disclosed it is conducting a car-sharing initiative with residents in New York; and its Chevrolet SUVs will soon be available on a shared basis to people at The Ritz Plaza luxury apartment building situated in Times Square.
The company also revealed plans to launch its Chevrolet Volt which will be powered by a battery for about 50 miles before transitioning to a gasoline engine and power source.
GM first intends to launch the Volts at its engineering campus in Southeast Michigan in 2016, but employees with the company are free to reserve a Volt that can be used with the said application. This will enable them to move around the campus in their self-driving cars.
In a collaboration with Honda Motors of Japan, GM developed a fuel-cell vehicle that might likely enter the market by 2020; and GM product chief, Mark Reuss, revealed it is possible the company considers working with Honda on other initiatives of mutual interests.
GM will not be the only automaker to develop an app that could work specially with their cars, Ford Motors recently announced its plans to release MyFord Mobile app which could work seamlessly with smartwatches. Volvo and Hyundai also released their own unique apps earlier this year.
The likelihood of Fiat Chrysler merging with GM remains strong, and FCA’s CEO Sergio Marchionne was quoted as saying that a merger with GM “will be to the best possible strategic alternative for FCA and GM” at this moment.