Coinciding with the start of SXSW 2014, Chevrolet announced an exciting partnership with Beats Music, the newest name in the streaming music service game. While in Austin earlier this week with Chevy, we had the opportunity to see just how the service will be integrated into the in-car entertainment system in select 2015 models starting this summer—if, that is, summer ever comes. To enable the service, Chevy will also introduce high-speed 4G LTE connectivity and data plans through OnStar for a vast majority of its vehicles in 2015. While other automakers (Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus) have offered similar Hotspot services for a short while now, the significance of the Chevy announcement can be found in the fact that the technology will be offered nearly fleet-wide—not just in the top tier models.
Using the new Chevrolet AppShop, listeners will have access to all the same services found in the native Beats Music app, extending to human-created personalized playlists and newly released albums to the extremely fun ad-lib style song selector. The latter of the three allows car occupants to pick from a list of scenarios to best fit their current situation, then Beats automatically generates a playlist to keep the good vibes going. Our best efforts produced a solid selection—from Hot Chip and Bob Dylan to Drake and Jay Z—when playing with the app.
The announcement will help ensure Chevy continues to lead the auto industry in making innovative in-car tech available at any price point. "[With the 4G LTE] it's truly a connected vehicle, and that opens a lot of possibilities," says Adam Luebbers, Lead Connected Customer Specialist at General Motors. "This is at the forefront—it's by far the largest and broadest deployment of 4G LTE in the industry. We're going to have it on anything from a $12,000 Spark up to a Corvette."
Keep an eye out for the connected OnStar 4G LTE and Beats Music app this summer on the Impala, Volt, Spark, Silverado, Malibu, Equinox 2015 models. Visit Chevrolet for more details.
Photos by Graham Hiemstra