What does a car with built-in 4G feel like? GM, in partnership with AT&T, set out to answer such a question, showing off a conceptual cook-up of what a connected vehicular future might look like during CTIA 2013.
The car is a 2014 Cadillac ATS, the company's current flagship and winner of the Detroit Auto Show's Car of the Year award for 2013. The connectivity is AT&T 4G, of course.
In February, the companies announced a partnership to bring the high-speed waves to GM cars starting in 2014, with the end game to eventually have all vehicles coming off the car maker's production lines armed with 4G.
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Attendees of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona got the first taste of the connected concept car, but this is the first time this 4G ATS has been shown on North American soil.
Equipped with 4G, a GM car could, for example, stream videos to passengers, provide in-vehicle Wi-Fi hot spots, allow for speedier hook up to custom apps and give car owners views from cameras mounted on the vehicle.
Imagine, a GM rep asked us, working late and wanting to know if there was a stranger lurking around your vehicle. Cameras, and 4G, would let you hop on your phone or tablet and instantly get four-sided views of the environment around your car.
The vehicle on display had cameras mounted on the front, rear and both sides, providing real time images of what was going on outside the ATS to a tablet.
Internally, the demoed ATS was equipped with internal cameras as well, perfect for spying on passengers you suspect are leaving crumbs in your whip.
GM is developing its own HTML 5-based app ecosystem, and we were told the company is looking to court more developers as the 2014 launch time frame approaches.
The first vehicles to see these types of services will be 2015 Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac models available in the U.S. and Canada. The features shown may have been prototypes, but they provided a glimpse at what a connected car future could be quite well.