By Vincent Hennigan
Ford Sync Specialist
Ford will introduce a new communications and entertainment system called Sync 3 on some 2016 models, and more will come on line in 2017.
Sync® 3 promises to reduce on-screen complexity, offer easier-to-use voice commands and changes to the control options for users. This new approach brings the Sync system in-line with typical smartphone commands and usage features.
Additionally, the new system will drop the Microsoft partnership and move to the Blackberry QNX system. A new Texas Instruments system-on-a-chip will bring noticeably improved response and processing times.
So the promise of Sync 3 is to offer faster performance, more conversational voice recognition, a more intuitive smartphone-like touch screen and easier-to-understand graphical interface to help Ford customers connect and control their smartphone on the road.
Initial photos and videos showing the new system reveals that the new system understands more conversational voice commands and allows functionality more like a tablet or smartphone.
Ford will also offer seamless integration of AppLink™ for a simple way to control smartphone apps.
Plus they will offer the addition of Siri EyesFree capability for iPhone users.
Also you’ll be able to get over-the-air software updates using Wi-Fi – which will allows easier updates.
Finally, it will offer enhanced 911 Assist® that provides subscription-free emergency calling in the event of a significant accident.
The Ford Sync system was first introduced eight years ago – the same year the iPhone was introduced.
Ford’s new SYNC® 3 system is a communications and entertainment system that is faster, more intuitive and easier to use with enhanced response to driver commands. SYNC 3’s more conversational voice recognition technology, a more smartphone-like touch screen and easy-to-read graphics will help millions of drivers connect with their lives and control their smartphone while on the road.
The next-generation system builds on the capability of SYNC technology already in more than 10 million SYNC-equipped vehicles on the road globally. With the earlier versions, some users just weren’t getting the most out of the system. Many claimed the system was impossible to use, but maybe the real issue is that some users were familiar with smartphone commands and those commands didn’t create the same results on the Sync system.
“Ford is delivering an easier way for customers to stay connected,” said Raj Nair, Ford chief technical officer and group vice president, Global Product Development. “SYNC 3 is another step forward in delivering connectivity features customers most want, and they tell us this kind of technology is an important part of their decision to buy our vehicles.”
Ford took a customer-centric approach in developing SYNC 3, drawing on 22,000 customer comments and suggestions, plus insights gleaned from research clinics, market surveys and tech industry benchmarking.
Since there are multiple Microsoft-based platforms that have been offered throughout the Ford system for many years, it is unclear if the older systems could be updated. Most likely, Ford customers will have to buy a new vehicle to get the newest infotainment system.
Ford is delivering MyFord and MyFord Touch Sync system currently. With the roll out of 2016 models (later in 2015), the new Sync 3 system will be available. Look for more stories in the next few months that will focus on this new system.