Ford Software Update brings Android Auto and Apple CarPlay to 2016 Vehicles
【Summary】Ford is making Android Auto and Apple CarPlay software support available to model-year 2016 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3. Previously, Ford’s 2016 model year these cars did not support the two popular services.
By Eric Walz
Ford is making Android Auto and Apple CarPlay software support available to model-year 2016 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3. Previously, Ford's 2016 model year these cars did not support the two popular services.
Owners of model-year 2016 Ford vehicles can update to the new SYNC 3 version 2.2 by downloading it to a USB drive, or over-the-air through a Wi-Fi connection. Less tech-savvy Ford owners can visit their local dealer to have the update performed.
Ford customers can update their software by visiting owner.ford.com to download and install with a USB drive. Customers with Wi-Fi-enabled vehicles and a available Wi-Fi network can set up their vehicle to receive the update automatically.
"Our SYNC 3 software platform was designed to be easy to update so we can get our customers the latest and greatest features, functionally and security enhancements," said Don Butler, executive director, Ford Connected Vehicle and Services. "With over-the-air updates, we can deliver new features to customers in the background while they continue using their vehicles."
Ford offers Wi-Fi updates for the first time
Although Ford has been issuing SYNC upgrades for its vehicles since 2009, this is the first time the company is offering an update via Wi-Fi. In Wi-Fi-enabled vehicles with Automatic System Updates option turned on within SYNC 3, the system will periodically connect to a customer's designated Wi-Fi network to check for updates.
If an update is available, the system automatically downloads the update in the background over a period of time without any customer interaction. And SYNC 3 is designed to perform the update as long as Wi-Fi is connected prior to the vehicle turning off, therefore there is no need to keep the vehicle running for the update to take place.
All of Ford's 2017 models already support Android Auto and Apple CarPlay including the Fiesta, Focus, Fusion and Mustang, SUVs including the Escape, Explorer and Expedition, F-Series trucks and Ford's electrified vehicles.
Compatible with Android devices 5.0 and higher, Android Auto brings the Android experience into the vehicle safely and easily with Google Maps, Google Play Music, phone, messaging and third party apps projected on the car's built-in display and available via voice controls. With a simplified interface, large touch targets, Google voice search and easy-to-use voice controls, Android Auto is designed to minimize distraction while on the road.
Compatible with iPhone 5 and later models running iOS 7.1 or higher, Apple CarPlay gives iPhone users an intuitive way to make phone calls, use voice-guided navigation, listen to music, and send and receive messages while staying focused on the road. Users can control Apple CarPlay through the in-vehicle display or via Siri voice control. Apple CarPlay support requires a USB hub upgrade available through Ford dealers.
Originally hailing from New Jersey, Eric is a automotive & technology reporter covering the high-tech industry here in Silicon Valley. He has over 15 years of automotive experience and a bachelors degree in computer science. These skills, combined with technical writing and news reporting, allows him to fully understand and identify new and innovative technologies in the auto industry and beyond. He has worked at Uber on self-driving cars and as a technical writer, helping people to understand and work with technology.
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