Pairing Your Phone to the Ford Sync System

Learn how to pair an Android, an iPhone or a Blackberry to the Ford Sync system.

Learn how to pair an Android, an iPhone or a Blackberry to the Ford Sync system.

Here’s a quick overview to show how to “pair” your phone and start using the hands-free features on the Ford Sync® system.

This hands-free infotainment system has been available in Fords since 2008. It’s based on a platform referred to as “Bring Your Own Device.” This means you can “pair” (connect) almost any smartphone, iPod, Mp3 player, or even older phones — as long as they are Bluetooth compatible. Sync has advanced from a basic system with an LED readout, to the MyFord and the MyFord Touch systems. Today’s topic focuses on pairing your phone model tot he Sync system.  For tips on making your phone compatible with SYNC, see the sections about the Android™, iPhone®, and Blackberry® phone platforms.

See this “Know your phone” video.

Some manufacturers focus their in-vehicle technology to just a certain type of phone but the Ford system works with just about every phone. SYNC uses Bluetooth® to connect to your phone and that’s the only feature your phone is required to have.  To get the most out of the SYNC system, it’s a good idea to keep your phone updated with the latest firmware version. Also, completely power down your phone at least once a week and let it reboot before getting back into your vehicle.

Your phone has physical features, such as buttons and jacks, that allows you to control how it works. Every phone also has a type of software known as “firmware.” A change in the firmware version can significantly change the function of your phone. While all the supported phones offer basic SYNC functionality—such as making hands-free calls— to learn what firmware versions support more advanced features, see the phone compatibility chart. Consult your phone manufacturer’s guide for instructions on how to find your existing firmware version.  You can usually update your firmware via a free download from your phone manufacturer or service provider.

The following are step-by-step instructions for the major phone platforms. Be sure to look for other blogs on this website for using your phone as a “media source” or for using USB devices.

The Android platform

Before pairing your AndroidTM phone with SYNC:

Turn Bluetooth On 

Under Bluetooth settings, choose Discoverable and Scan for Devices 

During the pairing process, you will be asked the question Download Phone Book. Respond by pushing the OK button and then your Android phone may notify you that SYNC wants to access your messages and phone book. Check the box Always Allow and respond by allowing the connection to Sync on your phone.

See this video on pairing to the Android platform

The iPhone platform

Before pairing your iPhone with SYNC, turn Bluetooth On.

During pairing, you’ll be prompted to download your phone book. To improve SYNC voice recognition, limit the number of contacts that download from your phone book when pairing. To use Favorite contacts:

Go to Bluetooth > SYNC settings

Set Favorites to On and under Other check None

Note that if you do this, only contacts marked Favorite will be available to SYNC.

iPod vs. iPhone

iPods® work differently than iPhones when connecting with SYNC. Media players like the iPod are not paired like iPhones but are connected to the vehicle’s USB port. Use voice commands for the USB mode with iPods.

See this video Pairing the iPhone to Sync

The Blackberry platform

Before pairing your Blackberry® phone with SYNC:

Turn Bluetooth On

Under Bluetooth Options, set Discoverable to Yes, set Connect on Power Up to Yes

If available, under General Options, set Default Call Volume to Previous 

During pairing, when asked, set Allow Outgoing Calls to Always.  You may need to first check “Don’t show me this message again.”

After pairing, under Bluetooth Device Properties, set Trusted to Yes.

In rare cases, you may have trouble pairing your Blackberry with SYNC, or no sound comes out, or your Blackberry is frozen in “thinking” mode when you try to use it with SYNC. To solve these issues, try rebooting the device: remove the phone’s battery, wait 30 seconds, then reinsert it.

See the video Pairing a Blackberry phone

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