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OnStar uses Salesforce clouds to find emergency services (or Dunkin')

OnStar has expanded beyond its original mission of connecting drivers to resources during emergency situations to using Salesforce to deliver fully connected cars that double as interactive mobile hubs.

The upcoming OnStar AtYourService platform available in General Motors (GM) vehicle dashboards delivers offers from national retailers and merchants such as Dunkin' Donuts through the OnStar RemoteLink mobile app. It also features a search tool to locate options for food, shopping, hotels, gas and more.

OnStar, owned by General Motors, uses a number of Salesforce clouds as the backbone of its "connected vehicle" experience -- which is available in more than 10 million vehicles globally, according to Rick Ruskin, marketing lead for GM/OnStar Global Connected Consumer. Some of the Salesforce clouds OnStar relies on include Marketing Cloud, Sales Cloud, Service and Community Clouds. OnStar hopes to add business partners, including those in the Salesforce ecosystem, to provide apps for its in-dash app store.

The new app-connected cars launched within the year, so it is still a new concept. Ruskin asserted during an interview at Dreamforce 2016 that OnStar AtYourService won't be all about pushing advertisements into vehicles. OnStar is working on "value-add services" for its customers, such as the ability to interact through a vehicle dashboard, the ability to click to order coffee or to activate the fuel pump, he said.

"These are the directions we are starting to move in for the very near future," Ruskin said.

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