If you lock yourself out of your General Motors car, but have a Windows Phone in your pocket, good news: you can now use your phone to get back in your vehicle.
Tuesday General Motors and Microsoft launched the OnStar RemoteLink app for Windows Phone, three years after the app launched with the Chevy Volt in 2010. The app is also available for iOS, Android, and BlackBerry.
RemoteLink lets you unlock and lock your doors, remotely start your vehicle, and turn off and on your horn and lights, all from your smartphone. You can also view data on your car's oil levels, tire pressure, and fuel levels, which GM says is the most common reason people use the app.
Even if you have a GM car and Windows Phone, there are a few caveats. You need to have an active OnStar subscription, a 2010 or newer Cadillac, Chevrolet, Buick, or GMC vehicle, and a compatible Windows Phone 7.5 or 8 device (the app was available for both my Lumia 521 and HTC 8X). General Motors says that the app is available for nearly all GM models, so if your GM car isn't older than 2010, it will likely work with the app.
Though you need an active OnStar subscription to start using the RemoteLink app, General Motors says that if you purchase a 2014 vehicle with OnStar, and use the app just once before your OnStar subscription runs out, you'll be able to remote lock and unlock, remote start, and remotely control your headlights for five years after that first use, whether you continue to pay for OnStar or not.