Hanover, Germany — Feb. 28, 2011 — More than three years ago Ford introduced SYNC, its award-winning connectivity technology built on the Windows Embedded Automotive platform to deliver rich, interactive experiences for drivers. Initially available only in North America, SYNC quickly became one of the industry’s most advanced voice-controlled connectivity and infotainment systems. At the end of 2010, Ford celebrated the installation of SYNC in more than 3 million vehicles.
Alan Mulally, President and CEO, Ford Motor Company (left) and Jean-Philippe Courtois, President, Microsoft International celebrate the launch of Ford SYNC in Europe. March 1, 2011
This week at CeBIT, Ford President and CEO Alan Mulally will take to the stage to unveil the company’s global plans for SYNC. He will announce that, next year, European drivers will be able to benefit from a smarter, intuitive and simplified way of interacting with in-car technologies and their digital devices. The system will debut in the new Ford Focus next year with the goal of being in more than 2 million vehicles in the region by 2015.
Microsoft and Ford have spent more than five years building innovative functionality into SYNC. Since Bill Gates first announced the partnership at CES in 2007, both companies have continued to work together closely to develop new experiences to surprise and delight Ford customers. This includes the addition of the MyFord Touch interface, the Microsoft Tellme voice-activated app for SYNC Traffic, Directions and Information (TDI) Services, and other new features.
MyFord Touch powered by SYNC makes it easier to make phone calls, listen to music and get directions while in the car, while the voice-activated TDI system in Microsoft Tellme expands Ford SYNC’s cloud-based voice-command capabilities.
MyFord Touch and the latest features of Ford SYNC demonstrate the flexibility of the Windows Embedded Automotive platform to offer Ford and third-party developers the opportunity to develop new and innovative features.
“We are pleased to announce that SYNC will soon be available to customers around the world,” Mulally said. “It is a smarter, safer and simpler way to connect drivers with in-car technologies and their digital lives. At Ford, we have always believed that the intelligent application of technology can help us deliver the very best customer experience and help us contribute to a better world, so we challenged ourselves to build technologically advanced cars that make driving greener, safer and smarter for all.”
MyFord Touch and the latest features of Ford SYNC demonstrate the flexibility of the Windows Embedded Automotive platform to offer Ford and third-party developers the opportunity to develop new and innovative features, such as mobile applications, an open API and Wi-Fi capability, while supporting the latest must-have consumer devices that are brought into the car.
Besides being able to play music the old-fashioned way — through CDs — users can also listen to all their favorite tracks via their smartphone, MP3 player and USB flash drives. They will also benefit from Internet “on the go” with SYNC’s Wi-Fi “hot spot” capability via a USB dongle or smartphone tether. Drivers are able to manage everything including climate control, mobile phone calls, satellite navigation and radio adjustments through voice control or an 8-inch, touch-screen LCD color display. They can even have e-mail messages read aloud and compose text message responses through voice command while on the move.
Some of the other features users will benefit from when SYNC launches in Europe include a voice-control system able to recognize 10,000 commands in each of 19 different languages.
A close up of the Ford SYNC automotive infotainment system details the excellence in graphic displays produced by the award-winning solution.
CeBIT attendees can visit the Ford booth (Hall 19, Stand C14) to learn more about SYNC with MyFord Touch, see demos and speak with Steven Bridgeland, senior product manager for Windows Embedded at Microsoft.