Since Ford began to participate in CES, basically it has taken a similar approach: releasing some new plans for SYNC system and SDL, show autopilot technology, and publishing some new cooperation news, this year is no exception.

Before the opening of CES, Ford announced the second generation of autopilot prototypes, which appeared on the Ford booth as scheduled. What appearing at the same time are the commuter cars and Gobike bikes which used by Ford's commuter shuttle and bicycle sharing program in San Francisco.
Ford second generation autopilot prototype

5 new apps joins in SYNC 3
Ford has been working hard to add a new app to SYNC 3. Yesterday, Ford and good partner Toyota also announced that the SmartDeviceLink Consortium Alliance will promote the SDL open source project in the form of a non-profit organization in the future. Currently, 13 vehicle companies and suppliers have joined. It can be seen that all Ford apps launched in SYNC 3 will likely appear in car models of other members of the alliance in the future.

At the Product Launch on Media Day, five additional apps were added to SYNC 3, namely navigation applications, data acquisition and analysis software, software connected to smart watches, payment applications and online music services.


1. Navigation application Sygic

Sygic Navigation App in SYNC 3

Sygic is a mobile navigation software for Android and IOS platform. It is said that there are currently 150 million users all over the world. To use the app on SYNC 3, you  need to download Sygic on your smartphone firstly, then connect your smartphone to SYNC 3. When you open Sygic, the phone interface will be displayed into the car screen. However, this is not a simple mirror link projection. The evidence is that in addition to touch, you can use the voice control function in the car to control Sygic. During this time, the phone will be in a lock screen to prevent driver distraction.
Sygic has also worked with Chevrolet before and is integrated into the MyLink system.

Currently, with Sygic, the Ford models with SYNC 3 currently have four different navigation methods: SYNC 3 comes with navigation software, Google Maps in Android Auto, Apple Maps in CarPlay, and Sygic. It seems that after CES announced support for Android Auto and CarPlay last year, Ford has been trying to figure out how to make people use the two systems in the car less.

It is said that this feature will appear on the newest Ford model.

2.DriverScore
The app, as its name suggests, is a software that scores driver behavior. The score can be shared with the insurance company, and then the insurance company provides an insurance discount based on the score.

According to Dave Hatton, global head of Ford Mobile Medical and Emergency Services, DriverScore was developed by IVOX, and the application can be downloaded on SYNC 3. When used, it collects various data of the vehicle, including brakes, throttles, steering, etc., and also collects around. Environmental information, such as a crossroads with a lot of traffic, or an inaccessible mountain trail. The algorithm in the app scores its behavior based on driver behavior and the surrounding environment.

In order to ensure the fairness of the score, the app also needs to be connected to the specific mobile phone through the cloud. In this way, when the owner is not his/her own, his driving behavior will not be counted in the owner's rating. In other words, if the car has to lend to a friend who is not reliable, at least don't worry about the impact on his own premium.

The first score of DriverScore will be given after 80 km, and will be scored every day. The DiscountZone function will list the insurance premiums that the insurance company gives for this rating.

Hatton also mentioned in the introduction of DriverScore that the owner can close or open the application autonomously. If you think that this system can really bring in benefits, then you can naturally use it for a long time, but if you don't think the revenue is big, or you don't want the data to be shared, you can turn off the data collection function in the system settings.

DriverScore is currently undergoing a final certification phase and will be released in the first quarter of this year. After the release, Ford will be the first company to offer UBI functionality through pre-installed software. If the app can be promoted in Ford and other car companies in the SmartDeviceLink Consortium alliance, it seems that it will be sooner or later to kill OBD.

3.Gear Auto Link for Samsung Smart Watch



The last app is Gear Auto Link, which allows Samsung smartwatches to be connected to SYNC 3.

When the two are connected, the Samsung Smart Watch can ask if you want to record the current parking position after the vehicle is parked in the parking space and the engine is turned off. In general, the GPS signal is recorded. If the GPS signal is not good, such as an underground parking garage, the driver can also input the parking floor, or the parking number and other information.

Another feature is that the driver can set a reminder function on the smart watch. Before driving, set a time interval and the watch will sound an audible warning after the time has elapsed to remind the owner to stay focused. In subsequent versions, the warning can also be a vibration. Compared with the parking information recording function, this reminder is a bit of a rib. The place that can work seems to only open long distances, but it is better to stop and rest when you are tired.

4. Pay for Speedpass+ and online music Dash Radio

Speedpass+ payment application

Speedpass+ is provided by ExxonMobil. After integration into SYNC 3, you can pay for the fuel directly on the dashboard via touch screen or voice control. Speedpass+ uses GPS positioning to know the gas station where the vehicle is located. Speedpass+ can also be used to find nearby gas stations.

Further cooperation with Amazon

Alexa Voice Assistant

Amazon's Alexa voice assistant has played a lot of shots at this year's CES, and Alexa has more and more devices to control. Ford, which has been working with Amazon last year, has gone deeper this year. Last year, Alexa was only available on Amazon Echo, and this year, Ford plans to integrate this virtual voice assistant into SYNC 3.

Starting next month, the Alexa voice assistant will appear on the Ford model with SYNC3 installed, which can be used to control vehicle functions and view specific information such as fuel volume. On some specific models, such as the electric version of Fox, C-Max Energy, you can still remotely control the vehicle from home through Amazon Echo.

By this summer, Alexa's functions will be further improved. In addition to remotely controlling the vehicle, it is also possible to remotely control the smart home in the car, such as turning on the lights in the home and the temperature of the preset thermostat.

Wireless charging service, new energy vehicle and V2X cooperation
Ford will provide wireless charging pilot services in the US and Europe. All Ford electric car owners can use the FordPass app to find the location of the wireless charging station and make an appointment. Whether the wireless charging site has been put into construction or not has not been announced, the time of this service has not been mentioned.

In addition, Ford will work with operators AT&T and Delphi to conduct V2X technology research and build a V2X platform. Among them, AT&T will provide software for network support and data analysis platform, Delphi will provide its own V2X module, and Ford will integrate in-car.

Ford also announced the future of the new electric vehicle product line at CES, which is 7 of the 13 electric vehicles it expects to launch in the next five years, including:

Ford will launch a hybrid version of the Mustang and F-150 in 2020

A pure electric small new SUV with a 300-mile range, marketed in 2020, produced at an assembly plant in Michigan, sold in North America, Europe and Asia

Automated hybrid car for car sharing, launched in North America in 2021, also produced at the Michigan plant

Transit hybrid, launched in Europe in 2019

Two police hybrids will be produced in Chicago

Ford also said it has canceled its plan to invest $1.6 billion in a new plant in Mexico. Instead, it will invest $70 million in a Michigan assembly plant and add 700 jobs to build electric and autonomous vehicles. .


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