The ability to operate digital device via voice commands or from the vehicle's steering wheel is a major selling point for the Sync technology. Further, Ford claims that no advance training is necessary in order for Sync to understand the user’s voice commands. Sync is currently compatible with American English, Canadian French and North American Spanish, with other languages expected following Sync’s introduction to the market in 2008.
Among Sync's many clever features is an automatic call transfer system (automatically transferring cell phone calls to Sync’s in-vehicle communication system when the user enters the vehicle). Additionally, Sync allows users full access to their cell phone contact list via simple voice commands, and with certain phone models, Sync can even read any incoming text messages aloud.
The Sync system can even translate common text messaging expressions like "LOL" and other frequently-used phrases. Users can even reply more than a dozen “canned” or predefined responses when they don’t have time to take a call.
Sync the Music
Sync fully integrates your on board stereo and MP3 media as well. Intuitively, you can inform Sync (via voice command) to play a certain genre of music (jazz or Indy, for example) and it will select songs at random from those genres in your music library. Nice touch.
And because Sync is software, not hardware-based, it can easily be updated to integrate new technologies and include new features without changing hardware. This allows for Sync to evolve over time with each new update, and develop a higher degree of personalization and added functionality than hardware solutions.
Ford’s Sync is yet another example of the automobile and electronics industries coming together to provide greater functionality to the end-user. With Sync, high-end software electronics has stepped clearly into the driver’s seat, and it is expected that other car manufactures will not be far behind in offering their own on board in-vehicle entertainment and communication systems.
The level of connectivity that Sync allows is hard to resist, and many users may find it hard to go back to the “old way” after adapting to the intuitive convenience of in vehicle digital integration.
Sync is available on 2008 Ford models, including Focus, Fusion, Taurus, Edge, Explorer, Mercury Milan and Lincoln vehicles.
The ability to surf the Internet, get real-time directions and traffic reports, all while integrated with your cell phone and car stereo could prove irresistible to drivers. At least that’s what Ford and Microsoft are counting on with the new Sync.