Sync Workshop: On using the new iPhone 5, iOS 6 and the Ford Sync system

Some more things to know when using your iPhone with the Ford Sync system after upgrading to a new iPhone or the Apple OS software.

By Vincent Hennigan,
Ford Sync Specialist

Anytime Apple updates its software, or makes a change to their phones, there’s bound to be a few million people trying to find out what Apps and other things will work with the changes.

So far the biggest issues really haven’t been with the Ford Sync adapting to Apple’s upgrades… it’s been the customer learning how to use the new Apple system.

You may have an iPhone 3GS, a 4 or 4S and you may have updated to the Apple iOS version 6.0 operating system. The new iPhone 5 will come with the Apple iOS 6.0 already installed. You will want to do a “clean pairing” with your Sync system if you have upgraded the software or bought the new iPhone 5. This means you will need to clear Sync off of your phone’s Bluetooth devices and remove your phone from the Sync System Settings. Follow the instructions below…

Go to the “Phone Menu” on the dashboard of your Ford vehicle.

With a Sync system with the blue LED readout on the center console, just push the “Phone” icon on your steering wheel. The words “Phone Menu” will appear and in a few seconds it will change to “Phone Redial.” then turn the right-side tuning knob until you see the words “Sync Settings” then push the OK button in the center of the tuning knob (or on your steering wheel. Go to the Phone Menu and go to Bluetooth Devices and delete the old phone from your list of BT Devices. Then select Add Devices, and push OK to begin “Pairing a Phone.” A 6-digit PIN number will be displayed.

If you have a touch screen navigation system, push the Phone hard button to the side of the touch screen, then go to the Settings button, it will take you to the screen for adding or deleting Bluetooth devices. Select the button with your old phone’s name. Touch it, and then push the button on the right that says “Delete Phone.” Then you can touch the button that says “Add Device.” Push OK to begin “Pairing a Phone.” A 6-digit PIN number will be displayed.

If you have a MyFord Touch system, push the upper left corner to access the phone menu, then go to the lowest button on the left side of the screen to access Settings, then on the next screen select “Bluetooth” and then another screen will show the list of Bluetooth devices. Touch the button with your old phone’s name, then touch Delete. Then touch the “Add Device” button. Push OK to begin “Pairing a Phone.” A 6-digit PIN number will be displayed.

Go to your iPhone, to the Settings Folder and then select the “Bluetooth” tab (it should be about three down from the top). Please note, the Bluetooth tab used to be found inside the General folder but it’s out on its own now. Then be sure your Bluetooth switch is toggled to the “On” position. Your iPhone will begin “searching for devices.” In a moment your phone will first see a “Handsfree” device and then it will turn into “Sync.” Push the Sync button on your phone and within a moment or two a second screen will appear. Look towards your dashboard for the 6-digit PIN. Enter that into your iPhone and push the blue button on the screen that says “Pair.”

When your Sync system asks you to enable 911 Assist, then push OK. Push OK to set your phone as the Primary Phone. When the Sync system prompts you to push OK to Download Phone Book, then push OK. This will take a few moments but after that is done then you are “paired” to the new iPhone.

Many people want to know if Ford’s Sync has expanded its voice-to-text recognition with the new Apple iPhone and operating system. Apple is still refusing to adhere to the MAP engineering code that Microsoft requires. Some HTC phones, some Samsung’s, some Blackberry’s and a few Motorola’s work with the Microsoft Sync voice-to-text system – Apple does not. If you have an iPhone 4S or the new 5, then don’t worry. When the vehicle is on, and your phone is paired, then just push the “Home” button on your iPhone for a few seconds. You will hear a tone come through your vehicle speakers. Siri will be active and listening. Just make the statement, “Read text messages.” She will read your current, unread texts. You can reply “Send text message” and she will ask you who you want to send to and what do you want to say. Press and hold down the phone icon on your steering wheel to hang up when you are done speaking with Siri. The Ford text messaging system does not allow you to send custom messages while driving. So the Sync/iPhone text messaging system offers the most flexibility.

And, if you push the voice button on the steering wheel, and say “Bluetooth Audio” then Sync will counter back, “Bluetooth Audio, state your command.” Then say “Play,” “Play All,” or “Shuffle.” Sync will go to your Music stored on your iPhone and begin playing. Bluetooth music is not set up to be “called out.” If you plug your iPhone into the USB port and say “USB” and then when it counters back to you, say, “Play.” The Sync system may initially take a few minutes to “read and index” your music. Try the command again and say “Play” and it will begin playing music from your phone. You will see the Sync system actually show the Artist Name and Song Title. You can push the voice button and call out “Play (Artist Name)” or “Play Song “Song Title.” You must ask for the full and complete song title or artist name so the system can find the play the correct song.

Not every Ford vehicle is set up to accept voice commands for accessing and playing phone Apps such as Pandora, Stitcher or iHeartRadio. Refer to the website for more details.  Please note, if you have upgraded your iPhone OS software, you will probably need to upgrade your Apps to work with the new Apple software.

Good luck and happy driving!