Ford Will Offer Apple CarPlay And Android Auto Support On 2017 Models

January 4, 2016 0 Comments

 

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Ford has announced its plans to include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support on all of its 2017 models as the automaker makes moves to expand its Sync 3 infotainment system and make it more compatible with smartphones.

The company says that it will first offer CarPlay and Android Auto on the 2017 Escape when it goes on sale this spring. Owners of Ford’s 2016 vehicles that are equipped with Sync 3 will have the option to upgrade later in the year.

Ford is adding these capabilities as part of its strategy to provide higher integration among car functions and smartphone apps. As an example, the company plans to utilize its Sync Connect technology to allow users to remotely lock and unlock cars, check fuel levels and locate and start a vehicle using a smartphone. Additionally, Ford has added a slew of new apps to its AppLink platform, including AAA member services, Concur expense tracking and location-based service Eventseeker.

The automaker explained that Apple CarPlay added to Sync will provide iPhone users with access to maps, messages, phone calls and music through Siri voice control or a touch screen, while Android Auto will give users easier access to Google services, including voice search, maps and music streaming through steering wheel controls and a touch screen.

“Sync allows customers to bring the smartphone technology they’re comfortable with into a vehicle and use it without hassle,” Don Butler, executive director, Connected Vehicle and Services for Ford, wrote in a statement. “With Sync, we move at our customers’ pace—making it easy for them to maintain a connected lifestyle no matter their choice of smartphone, apps or services inside and outside their vehicle.”

This announcement comes on the cusp of the CES show in Las Vegas, where many companies are expected to unveil technologies that automate a number of car functions, as automakers are increasingly turning to Apple and Android services.

Last May, GM said that it would offer both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto on 2016 model-year Chevrolets. Ferrari already has commercially-available vehicles with Apple CarPlay, and it is available in aftermarket products sold through Pioneer and Alpine. Last year, Hyundai said that it became the first automaker to offer Android Auto on a production car with its 2015 Hyundai Sonata, with plans to offer CarPlay in early 2016.

In a statement, Ford said that its Sync infotainment system is currently on more than 15 million vehicles on the road, with the expectation for that number to reach 43 million by 2020.

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