We reported on the RelayRides OnStar partnership back at CES, with RelayRides using the OnStar API to broaden its network of available vehicles. RelayRides allows its members to rent cars on a short-term basis directly from the car owners. It's a peer-to-peer car-sharing network. The partnership with OnStar will allow owners of cars equipped with the OnStar service to add their vehicles to RelayRides, giving them the opportunity to rent out their vehicles for cash. Locking, unlocking, and starting the vehicle can all be performed using the RelayRides smartphone app, and OnStar has made it easy for owners to add their vehicles to the service.
It may seem a bit unorthodox to make your personal vehicle available for rental to strangers, but RelayRides does have protections in place as they look to compete with the likes of Zipcar. What do you think? Would you use a service like this?
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We chat with Vijay Iyer of OnStar to talk about how the OnStar FMV mirror add-on is performing at retail, as well as the new announcement of the OnStar API. The OnStar API allows third-party developers to write code and apps that tap into OnStar's cloud of user information. The first announced partner is RelayRides, which allows the average user to lend out his or her vehicle when they aren't using it, all controlled by a RelayRides app that taps into OnStar. We get a rundown of what OnStar users can expect from developers going forward. You can purchase the OnStar FMV from Amazon. This was recorded at CES 2012.
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Here at CES 2012, OnStar has just announced their own closed API that will allow developers to tap into OnStar data for use in their own apps. They've also made it known that its first partner on the API front will be RelayRides, a social network that allows anyone to rent out their own vehicle when they aren't in use. This means that you can log in to the RelayRides app, and it will utilize OnStar services to find which cars are available, where they are, and will then allow you to book the car, and even unlock the doors and start it up, all using the smartphones app. Vehicle owners will be able to set their rates and times.
This is just the beginning of the potential of what we should expect from developers as it pertains to OnStar data. More partners will be announced soon, and developers are encouraged to sign up for access, which you can do by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.