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 Post subject: Ford to work with CarPlay, but will also continue with SYNC
PostPosted: Sun May 17, 2015 5:31 am 
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Ford will be supporting both Google's Android Auto, and Apple's CarPlay technology, but those systems are only allowed to be a secondary interface to a primary navigation system.

Ford CEO Mark Fields said "At the end of the day we don't want to end up as the handset business" commenting on the fate of the PC Makers and Phone makers who learned the hard way that using a common operating system may lead to powerful devices with lots of apps, but it is also a great recipe for an unprofitable hardware business.

"We want to make sure you are not pushed into a decision on a $40,000 car based on your $200 smartphone," said FOr CTAO Raj Nair. "The data shows SYNC has been a significant draw in the showroom."

Ford will look for ways SYNC can work more closely with the systems from Google and Apple. If a customer wants to use, say, Google’s maps but listen to Sirius radio through SYNC, Ford will make that possible, Nair said.

The latest version of SYNC, due this summer, replaces Microsoft’s operating system with BlackBerry’s QNX. It also adds new apps, a more modern touchscreen and the ability to get updates over Wi-Fi.

The company is also moving to add cellular capabilities to its cars. So far, cellular is limited to Ford’s plug-in electric cars and some Lincoln models, but Fields said more cellular-equipped cars are coming.

“You will see that propagate,” Fields said, “so we can have all of our vehicles have that capability.”

He didn’t give a specific timeline for that, however. Rival General Motors has moved to rapidly include LTE connections in its full lineup of cars through a partnership with AT&T.

The other big technology area for Ford is of course autonomous and semi-autonomous driving.

While Google gets a lot of the credit for its self-driving cars and German automakers have some of the flashiest assisted driving technologies, Fields said Ford has been a leader in bringing assisted driving capabilities to the masses.

“It’s not just for the very rich people,” Fields said, touting some of the capabilities available in even affordable models like the Fiesta. “That goes to our history as a company of making technology accessible to everyone. I think we are making good progress.”

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