News Release

Verizon Wireless Introduces the America's Choice with OnStar Plan

America's Choice with OnStar Gives Customers Option to Use Verizon Wireless Minutes with Handset or OnStar-embedded Phone and the Convenience of One Bill

June 15, 2004

Jeffrey Nelson
Jeffrey.Nelson@VerizonWireless.com
908-306-4824Geri Lama
OnStar
Geri.Lama@onstar.com
248-588-4950

BEDMINSTER, NJ and TROY, MI — Verizon Wireless, the nation's leading wireless service provider, and OnStar, the nation's leading provider of in-vehicle safety, security and information services, announced today the availability of the America's ChoiceSM with OnStar service plan. With the new plan, customers can use their Verizon Wireless phones outside the vehicle and send calls from their handheld phones to OnStar-embedded in-vehicle phones. America's Choice with OnStar is the first calling plan that integrates handheld wireless service with a fully embedded, voice-activated in-vehicle phone and gives customers the convenience and simplicity of receiving one bill.

"The America's Choice with OnStar calling plan lets our customers use their Verizon Wireless minutes inside their OnStar-equipped vehicles, giving them access to our award-winning wireless service with the additional conveniences of hands-free voice-activated dialing and a single bill," said John Stratton, chief marketing officer for Verizon Wireless.

"Through our relationships with the world's largest automaker and the nation's leading wireless provider, we are able to respond to our subscribers' requests to offer increased mobile connectivity," said Chet Huber, president of OnStar, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors. "The availability of this handheld option is a natural extension of OnStar's industry leadership in the delivery of safety, security and communications inside the vehicle."

The America's Choice with OnStar plan lets customers use their Verizon Wireless plan minutes to make and receive calls on their handheld Verizon Wireless phones and OnStar in-vehicle phones and drivers can simply transfer incoming calls from their Verizon Wireless handset to the embedded phone in their OnStar-equipped General Motors vehicle. Customers can select from two options:

  • Immediate Call Forwarding — Customers can forward all calls from their Verizon Wireless handheld phones directly to their in-vehicle OnStar phones.
  • Conditional Call Forwarding — Customers can select to have the Verizon Wireless handheld phones ring four to five times before the call is forwarded to the in-vehicle OnStar phone. With this option, subscribers have the flexibility of answering either their handheld or in-vehicle phone.

In mid July, Verizon Wireless' America's Choice with OnStar plan will be available in the Atlanta, Kansas City, New York, San Francisco and the greater metro Detroit markets. The service will continue to rollout and should be available throughout the Verizon Wireless service area in the following several months.

"Hands-free, cell phone communication in the automobile is one of the top wireless applications vehicle owners are interested in," said Thilo Koslowski, lead automotive analyst and vice president, Gartner. "A successful communication solution will focus on reliability, flexibility and affordability by allowing customers to continue using their existing cellular phones and service contracts when making calls from their vehicles."

The affordability of digital makes the America's Choice with OnStar calling plan possible. OnStar's improved digital hardware allows for more secure calling, improved voice recognition and faster, continuous digit dialing. The embedded digital phone is compatible with CDMA wireless service.

OnStar subscribers with new OnStar digital hardware can sign up for the America's Choice with OnStar service plan by updating existing Verizon Wireless customer agreements or by obtaining a new Verizon Wireless agreement. OnStar subscribers can learn more about the calling plan by contacting OnStar at the toll-free number, 888-4-ONSTAR (888-466-7827). New OnStar subscribers will receive information about the plan from OnStar during the first few months of their subscription.

About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 40 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To receive broadcast-quality video footage of Verizon Wireless operations, log onto www.thenewsmarket.com/verizonwireless.  

About OnStar
OnStar, available on more than 50 models from General Motors and select models from six other auto manufacturers, is the nation's leading provider of in-vehicle safety, security and information services using the Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite network and wireless technology. OnStar services include automatic notification of air bag deployment, stolen vehicle location assistance, emergency services, roadside assistance with location, remote door unlock, GM Goodwrench remote vehicle diagnostics, route support and convenience services. OnStar Personal Calling allows drivers to make and receive hands-free, voice-activated phone calls through a nationwide cellular network and access a wide range of other information services. Additional information is available at www.onstar.com .

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