General Motors has rolled out a new addition to its already-successful OnStar platform. Called Family Link, the new service lets users track other family members who have access to your car, allowing you to sign up for text messages and e-mail alerts when the vehicle arrives at a specific location or to let you know where it is at a specific time. Yeah, it’s a double-edged sword, but it’s a feature that customers want.
Family Link had previously been tested by a group of 4,500 existing OnStar customers. The feedback was resoundingly positive, with OnStar VP of subscriber services Joanne Finnom saying the testers “told us it provides them peace of mind by staying connected to their family when they’re on the road.” The service is of course designed with the altruistic intention of making sure family members are safe.
But of course, there are also concerns that it could be used for less salient purposes. Suspicious spouses could use it to spy on one another, or parents of adult kids could covertly track where their children are going when they’re on what they believe to be a private date. Regardless, the service is rolling out nationwide. Current customers will get invited to participate in batches, with the first set of invitations going out next month. The service will cost an additional $3.99 per month.