DETROIT (WWJ) – Where’s Santa?
The folks in the OnStar network operations center in downtown Detroit will tell you Christmas Eve. And the North American Aerospace Defense Command is tracking Santa again too, online and by phone.
From 7 a.m. on Dec. 24 until 5 a.m. on Dec. 25, anyone with an active OnStar subscription can press the blue OnStar button in his or her vehicle to request a “Santa Update” and find out Santa’s current location.
As for NORAD, starting at midnight Mountain time Monday, Dec. 24, you can visit www.noradsanta.org and watch Santa prepare for his journey. Then, beginning at 6 a.m. Eastern time, trackers worldwide can speak with a live phone operator about Santa’s locations by calling 877-HI-NORAD or by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
NORAD’s “Santa Cams” will also stream videos as Santa makes his way over various locations throughout the world.
“Each year, technology plays an increasingly important role in connecting friends and families, especially during the holidays,” said Neelie O’Conner, director of OnStar subscriber services. “For the fourth consecutive year, OnStar will be a part of this tradition, helping our customers connect with Santa during this special season.”
Built on leading-edge mapping from Bing Maps and on Microsoft’s Windows Azure cloud computing platform, you can track Santa and his trusty reindeer in real-time on a variety of mobile devices with dedicated Windows Phone and Windows 8 apps, as well as apps for iOS and Android.
NORAD has tracked Santa for more than 50 years, all due to a typo in a 1955 Sears ad encouraging kids to call Santa. Now, with cutting edge technology from Microsoft, nearly 25 million people around the world will follow Santa’s journey via the web, mobile devices, e-mail, and phones.
“We had so much fun last year using OnStar to find out where Santa was throughout the night,” said OnStar subscriber Kim Miller. “Each time we got in the car, my children were excited to find out where Santa had traveled to next. It’s a great way to engage the whole family during Christmas Eve travels.”
The folks at OnStar also say Santa’s sleigh is, of course, OnStar-equipped. And it has several custom services, including:
— Reindeer Health Diagnostics: Santa can receive instant reports on his reindeer’s hunger and energy levels to make sure they’re in the best possible health for their journey.
— Hands-Free Calling: Santa will be able to chat with his elves and Mrs. Claus back at the North Pole while keeping his hands on the reins and his eyes on the sky.
— Turn-By-Turn Navigation: OnStar will provide Santa with hands-free, directions to all the Christmas Eve destinations on the “nice” list.