Talking And Texting Through SYNC With MyFord Touch
SYNC with MyFord Touch supports Bluetooth-based hands-free kits, phone book transfer with contact photos, and audible text messaging. So, you can technically talk and text as you drive around, though there are still notable safety concerns about trying to multitask in the car. Laws against distracted driving are quickly limiting the scope of activities you can undertake behind the wheel, and this seems like it could be the next target of law enforcement.
Setting up a phone for the first time is painless, and by far one of the easiest processes we’ve tackled. When you step into the car, there’s an “Add Phone” button on the LCD that brings up the device pairing screen. This puts the system in discovery mode so your phone can search for and find it. There are no sub-menus or complicated voice commands to fight. If you want to add a second phone, there's a single sub-menu that displays currently-paired devices and the same “Add Phone” button. You can also specify which phone receives priority if there are multiple paired devices in the car at the same time.
Once a phone is paired and connected, SYNC with MyFord Touch conveys your basic battery status, signal levels, and a dial pad. It also provides shortcuts to your phone book, call history, and text messages.
The initial phone book transfer takes a second. But once that completes, you have complete access to your contacts, including e-mail addresses and a contact photo. Unfortunately, the photo ID feature is only supported by select Android phones with the HTC Sense or MotoBlur user interfaces, along with a couple of Windows Phone-based devices. The Galaxy Nexus and iPhone aren't supported, so we can't share our beloved editor-in-chief’s mug.
SYNC with MyFord Touch can receive and display text messages on the LCD screen. It can also read them aloud as you’re driving along (at least in theory; the phone has to explicitly support this feature). There aren't many devices currently able to push text messages to the SYNC display, though if you own a BlackBerry or MotoBlur-equipped phone, the feature does work. Otherwise, you're stuck texting the old fashioned way. And hopefully that means not until you reach your destination.
Ford does include a couple of generic preset messages for quick responses to received texts. The message list is user-editable, so you can add LOL or LMFAO if you so desire. Fortunately, more phones can send texts through SYNC than receive. We had no troubles sending messages through our Galaxy Nexus.
This is shockingly bad code quality for an embedded system. I may get a Ford vehicle in the future but it won't have SYNC in it. I'll epoxy a tablet to the dash if I need entertainment that bad.
P.S. What's up with the broken URL parsing?
What is the world coming to?
However, there are little things here and there that show the system has tremendous potential, but lacks polish you expect when it's in your automobile. I own a reasonably new Ford (2006 Freestyle.) It's been an exceptional, sturdy, and reliable car for several years now with no mechanical issues to date. My dad owns an old Lincoln Navigator with over 370,000 miles on it, still with the original engine running. Fords have been pretty good to me and my family over the years. You put in the key, turn it, and the thing runs. You push the buttons on the door and the windows go up or down. Flip a switch and the heater comes on.
You expect your automobiles to be like this. Ford Sync does not yet feel like this. "Do I push this button this way or that way?" "What word order do I need to use for this command?" "Why do I have to re-command Sync to start playing my phone's music via bluetooth every time I start my car rather than it just start automatically?" "Why does the system hang once in a while for no apparent reason?"
It just doesn't yet feel like it's reliable and responsive. I was intrigued and impressed by Sync, but it needs more polish, fluidity, refinement, and most of all consistency and reliability for it to please the masses day after day, and THIS is why Sync is the single worst factor in Ford's otherwise good reliability ratings being lowered, as mentioned above.
I don't think that anybody would buy a new car just for this technology, at least I hope not. But new cars also come with stability, traction, ABS, EBD and panic brake help which is nice.
My next car will be electric, maybe a 3-wheeled Zaptera. That's a reason to upgrade!
We touch on that in the conclusion. V2.0 of the software fixed a lot of the crashes and issues. We did not experience any crashes during the week we had the car.
That sounds fancy, my daily is a '90 Miata with no power steering, manual windows, no side door guard beams and a first generation airbag. Its a ton of fun though.
HDMI input would be nice. I think Honda is the only one that has HDMI input on the Honda Odyssey, but only on the $45k Elite model.