The OnStar system in GM’s upcoming Volt might be switching to Android according to rumours, which would certainly enable its handheld app to work even better with the in-car dashboard. Right now, the OnStar mobile app will let owners start the Chevrolet Volt remotely, pop the trunk, schedule charging for the electric motor, and reviewing mileage statistics, the kind of functions pioneered by Viper SmartStart.
One of the key differentiators between OnStar and Ford’s Sync system is that Sync was geared heavily towards mobile app developers, while OnStar was relatively closed. If GM were to make the jump to Android, that situation could completely reverse, enabling a new market of car-specific applications. Right now GM’s only in preliminary talks with Google over the possibility, so we wouldn’t see anything until 2011 at the earliest. Still, Android preloaded in cars through a major manufacturer could substantially expand the horizons of the mobile OS.