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I live in Kentucky but have not received this notice. I live in the western edge so I don't know if this affects matters or not. I'd be upset however to lose this service.
 
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note this is only the begining of the shut down of onstar calling network due to FCC regulations. I mention this on this forum before when I was stating GM needed to get with the program and install bluetooth in their vehicles. Over the next 6 months I bet we will see more and more areas getting shut down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So does anybody know the reasoning behind this? Why would the FCC want to shut down OnStar? Or is it just caught up in some other policy change that happens to affect OnStar?

:confused:
 
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FCC is working to open ranges up to cell carriers and also working the up coming sale of the 700MHz range. Currently they are working to eliminate most if not all the analog frequencies such as the old TV bands and such, as the cost to maintain those networks is too high and digital is less expensive to maintain and easier and faster to expand and build upon for future needs. Onstar has been slow to move to a completely digital network and therefore as of the 1st of 2008 is going to be forced to shut down in some areas if they have not converted. Also some of the frequencies that Onstar and some carriers like Nextel and other carriers use are working on a frequency that is to close to emergency services communications frequencies and they are being required to move off or be governmental shut down in 2008 as part of Patriot Act.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the information.. I thought analog "cell service" went away a couple of years ago. I had a 2003 GM vehicle that I could only renew OnStar 1 year as it only had the capability of analog service & I couldn't renew because of that, or so I was told. So, your saying OnStar still uses some analog service? Do you work for OnStar??
 
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Analog is still in use by many Cell Phone, TV and other communication services. As of 2008 most will be moved to digital. I work for on of the big cell phone carriers not OnStar. OnStar is working to improve, just not as fast as the government would like. :)
 

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firebird said:
This has been posted in the Acadia forum today & seems to be in the Kentucky area. Anyone with an Enclave get one of these letters?
I just got one today. I live in the 'wilds' of AZ. I have switched over to the Verizon family plan for my calling, but don't know how that will be affected. My first call to the Verizon rep didn't know what I was talking about. She refered me to the Verizon/Onstar phone # 1-866-845-6334, but after about an hour of waiting for a rep, I gave up. Must be a lot of questions about this surprise.

Wayne
 

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My dealer accidently left out a brochure for salesman's eyes only used to sell XM and OnStar: The 2008 Dealer Pocket Guide (GM Item#ON-DPG-SEPT07). In addition to salesman commission's and procedure, sales and delivery tips, etc. There is a section on the FCC changes. On the last page of the section is a page entitled:

ATTENTION DEALERS IN THE FOLLOWING STATES: AL, CO, KS, KY, MO, OK, TX, UT, WY

OnStar relies on local cellular agreements through our national service provider to serve our subscribers. Today, OnStar cellular agreements cover 99% of the U.S. population. Coverage maps for OnStar service overall, as well as some of our individual services like Turn-by-Turn Navigation, can be found on http://onstar.com.

Due to the anticipated discontinuation of analog service by cellular carriers, OnStar service offered currently in some areas will not be available after 12/31/07. We anticipate that the following ZIP codes will be affected. This list is subject to change. Please refer to http://onstar.com for the most current information.
[/color]
Each City has a list of zip codes. If you see your city, send me a personal message with your zip code and I will see if it is on the list.


STATECITIES
ALFAYETTE, GREENE, RANDOLPH
CORIO BLANCO
KSATCHISON, DONIPHAN
KYBATH, FLEMING, GARRARD, LEWIS, LINCOLN, MENIFEE, MONTGOMERY, NICHOLAS, ROBERTSON, ROWAN
LAAVOYELLES, ST HELENA, VERNON, WEST FELICIANA
MOLINN
OKCUSTER
TXBROWN, CONCHO, DIMMIT, EDWARDS, KIMBLE, KINNEY, MASON, MCCULLOCH, MENARD, REAL, SABINE, SAN AUGUSTINE, SAN SABA, ZAVALA
UTRICH
WYFREMONT
 

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Jas4slk is pretty much right on! The FCC has agreed to ban ANALOG cell frequencies of cell phones and the like (I.E.......ONSTAR!) in Feb '08. This is because analog frequencies take up so much "air room". The new digital equipment can fit a hundred calls on same frequency 1 analog caller used! The CELL CO are the ones who petitioned the FCC. Business/progress. No more.

I just updated my '03 Yukon (in July) to Digital so my Onstar phone still works! It cost $15 and a one Year agreement w/Onstar. Was gonna do that anyway. Only $15???? THX GM! Now that's a deal!!
Problem seems that the old powerful, analog signal coverage is not being exactly replaced, immediately, with the weaker digital. Again business/usage decision. Towers will have to be erected. Greater metro areas have no concerns. Digital has been there for years.

The rest of you will get service as soon as the Cell Co's think it warrants the investment. I believe not TOO long. If you drive near Metro areas, it will then work! If not, that's the price for escaping the urban cites for fresh air!! :thumb: No pity here ;) I might be jealous.................
 

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Wow Claveman, now this is exactly what this forum is suppose to be about and how it should work. Anyone that doesn't think this is great info/service I don't know what else you could want. thank you.
 

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I guess you can file this under the category of "For Whatever It Is Worth".
I just got off of the phone with both Onstar and Verizon. They said that I would not be effected by the 2008 Onstar change because I have the Verizon Family Plan which is already digital.
I hope so, will be interesting to see. I would hate to lose my 45K cell phone.

Wayne
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Really hate to see analog cell service go... Once its all digital then service will be good on major roads & cities but will be spotty at best in country. Overall, things will be worse. As I remember a digital tower has about a 5 miles coverage range & the analog service has a range of 25 to 35 miles depending on the topology of the area. Don't hold me to those figures but I do know that analog has a much greater range.
This Fall I was at a function in a small town & I went outside to make a call, with a normal digital phone, & it said "no service". I decided to try the Enclave phone & the call completed & sounded completely normal. This is not progress! This one is not GM's fault!!

:banghead:
 

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sunshadw said:
I would hate to lose my 45K cell phone.

Wayne
You got me with this one. I'm sitting here wondering who spends 45K on a cell phone... That must be a typo... well, I don't know his garage is impressive... Then, aaaahhh. I get it. :D
 

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GM Cars built with ONStar before 2002 are out of luck altogether:

http://www.motorists.org/blog/technology/gms-onstar-fading-out-for-some-in-2008/

NMA Website GM’s OnStar - Fading Out For Some In 2008
November 1st, 2007 Posted in Helpful Information, Technology
This is a guest post by NMA Member Bob Morrow.

General Motors’ OnStar cell phone system will be losing thousands of customers starting January 1st, 2008 due to technological changes. The OnStar system, which uses cell phone networks and GPS data to both call for help and provide location information, will not work for some customers after January 1st, 2008 due to an edict by OnStar in response to an FCC decision five years ago relating to analog cell phone systems.

Back in 2002, the Federal Communications Commission decided that the time had come to accelerate the conversion of cell phone systems from analog to digital. To effect this, they allowed (but did not require) cell phone companies to turn off their analog cell phone transmitter sites on Monday, February 18, 2008.

Because digital cell systems are much more capable and efficient, expect most analog systems to be turned off on that day or within a few weeks of it.

But, this presents a problem for some drivers of vehicles equipped with the OnStar system. When OnStar was first offered for sale in 1996, digital cell systems were new, so OnStar decided to go with analog equipment until around the 2002 model year. Guess what? If you have an OnStar-equipped vehicle made in that time frame, you can’t upgrade it to digital, so your OnStar will fade out for good on 1/1/08. If your vehicle was made between 2002-2004, it probably can be upgraded to digital, and OnStar systems made after that are already digital.
 

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Doesn't this last statement i.e. "If your vehicle was made between 2002-2004, it probably can be upgraded to digital, and OnStar systems made after that are already digital", make this thread moot. With 2008 Enclaves, our systems are digital as are most cell phone signals? Maybe remote areas will still have a problem, but not due to Onstar, but due to poor tower coverage with digital cell service?


Unless I am missing the point, 95% of us will not need to worry...Please correct me if wrong.
 
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Here is a link for all to read and better understand why this could impact them. Just because you are on digital does not mean OnStar has carrier agreements in some places and therefore services will end when there traditional network has been turned off. That is why letters are being sent to customers in certain areas, which is the main reason this thread was started as some customers have received these notices from OnStar. Note these customers own either a 2007 or 2008 GM model vehicles. If GM /OnStar are going to continue to have a wide coverage they will have to build in agreements with other carriers other than just Verizon. As we all know no one Phone carrier covers all areas and to get the best coverage as a Nation Wide service provider as OnStar advertises, then they need to expand and have their service run across multiple carrier’s networks to ensure they always can provide their customers with service.

http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/analogcellphone.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
bsox said:
Doesn't this last statement i.e. "If your vehicle was made between 2002-2004, it probably can be upgraded to digital, and OnStar systems made after that are already digital", make this thread moot. With 2008 Enclaves, our systems are digital as are most cell phone signals? Maybe remote areas will still have a problem, but not due to Onstar, but due to poor tower coverage with digital cell service?


Unless I am missing the point, 95% of us will not need to worry...Please correct me if wrong.
I don't think this thread is moot. This is information for everyone, not just big city folks. If you happen to be on vacation & travel through any of these areas you will probably be affected because OnStar evidently does not have agreements with the digital cell carriers in the areas shown below as posted by Claveman above:

STATE CITIES
AL FAYETTE, GREENE, RANDOLPH
CO RIO BLANCO
KS ATCHISON, DONIPHAN
KY BATH, FLEMING, GARRARD, LEWIS, LINCOLN, MENIFEE, MONTGOMERY, NICHOLAS, ROBERTSON, ROWAN
LA AVOYELLES, ST HELENA, VERNON, WEST FELICIANA
MO LINN
OK CUSTER
TX BROWN, CONCHO, DIMMIT, EDWARDS, KIMBLE, KINNEY, MASON, MCCULLOCH, MENARD, REAL, SABINE, SAN AUGUSTINE, SAN SABA, ZAVALA
UT RICH
WY FREMONT

Who knows, there could be more coming...
 

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Thanks, as I said, please correct me if I am wrong.

I just think that GM will not let Onstar go away for the vast majority of their customers, how would that help them? I kind of think they have a plan we may not be aware of...who knows, but with the amount of money they spend on TV and radio ads for Onstar services, it doesn't sound like they think there is going to be a problem. I am probably to niave though so I will leave it up to those smarter than I to figure out.
 

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I have a silly question:

If Verizon has the OnStar contract, does it allow for free "in network" calling to other Verizon cell phones from the OnStar hands-free phone?

TM
 
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