Ford SYNC 3 Review: It Doesn’t Suck Any More - Ford Inside News Community
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 09-01-2015, 09:46 AM Thread Starter
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Ford SYNC 3 Review: It Doesn’t Suck Any More

There may not have been a more despised automotive infotainment system in history than MyFord Touch (MFT).

Complex, slow and full of bugs, MFT suffered a flawed existence. Operating a vehicle’s controls through an Etch-a-Sketch may have been more user friendly.

Ford, well aware of these complaints, began work on a new system about three years ago and now, the culmination of the manufacturer’s work has to come to fruition in the form of a new infotainment system — SYNC 3.

SYNC 3 – It’s Not MyFordTouch 2.0

SYNC 3 is an entirely new, ground-up redesign that is, thankfully, not at all based on MyFord Touch. Both the hardware and the software are all new, utilizing the Blackberry-developed QNX platform that will soon take over a lot of vehicle infotainment systems.

As is the case with most new infotainment systems, Ford claims that SYNC3 will have instantaneous response from its new capacitive screen. A capacitive screen uses the mild electrical charge from your finger tips to navigate through menus. It’s the same technology used in most smartphones and, like smartphones, the screen on SYNC 3 allows users to pinch and zoom, pan the map, swipe and more.

And Now For Something Completely Different

As soon as SYNC 3 fires up, it’s obvious just how different the system is. Gone is the four-square setup that divided important information into quadrants on the screen. Now the menu screens consist of two rows of large icons surrounded by boxes that Ford calls tile screens. All menu screens follow this format for increased simplicity and usability.

All audio screens are made to look similar no matter what media is being played for familiarity and easier usability. Basically, everything is larger, clearer and simpler to see now. Some may call the design basic or dated looking, but it’s all about functionality and, more importantly, it actually works.

And For Added Ease of Use

Regardless of which function is currently being used, six simple icons remain on the bottom of the screen for quick access to key features. This is similar to the setup used in Chrysler’s Uconnect system – a favorite around the offices. On top, there is a status bar that lists items like time, outdoor temperature, climate settings, etc.

When in a menu tile screen that has multiple pages of icons, the next page of icons can be seen slightly to the right so the user knows to swipe over to the next page. And best of all, SYNC 3 comes with state retention, which means when the car is turned off, the audio channel, playlist, song, etc will resume where it left off.

Even if SYNC 3 is all new, where it is housed in various vehicles stays the same. The same hard buttons from the MyFordTouch days carry over and there are no plans to change theses buttons until the vehicle’s next refresh. It’s unfortunate, because despite the new system’s improved touchscreen operation, the hard button integration could be better.

Enhanced Voice Command

Ford is really pushing the enhanced voice recognition with SYNC 3 and it works well, but isn’t perfect. It still requires going through structured menus, like stating navigation or audio first before giving a command. It’s also possible to include these instructions all in one command though, like “navigation, find a pizza place” instead of saying “navigation” and then afterwards “find a pizza place.”

The biggest issue is that it’s still necessary to wait for system to finish ...
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 06-26-2017, 08:34 PM
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Re: Ford SYNC 3 Review: It Doesn’t Suck Any More

just to use this thread's title,
here's an email I just got

The latest Ford SYNC updates: What you need to know
Date: Jun 26, 2017 4:02 PM

New available Ford SYNC® 3 software updates are here, and we're bringing you the nitty-gritty first.

The TL;DR version: Updating is even more convenient and Android™ and Apple CarPlay compatible users will have a lot to cheer about.
Update over Wi-Fi©: For the first time, drivers with model-year 2016 Ford vehicles can update automatically through a Wi-Fi connection.
Android + your Ford: Android users will now be able to receive voice-guided navigation, live traffic information and estimated travel time safely and easily.
Apple CarPlay Compatibility: iPhone® users with iPhone 5 and later models running iOS 7.1 or higher can now use Apple CarPlay to make hands-free calls, use apps and listen to music.
Want more details?

Keeping you connected,
The Ford Social Team

A new update to the SYNC® software makes it even easier for owners of some 2016 Ford vehicles to get the most out of their vehicle’s voice-activated connectivity system. System update 2.2 will be bringing Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ compatibility for 2016 model-year cars, trucks and SUVs with the SYNC 3 system.*

With the update, these vehicles will be able to interact with paired mobile devices more seamlessly than ever before.

“We believe connectivity is critical to the future of mobility, and Ford is committed to adding advanced connectivity capabilities across its vehicles,” said Don Butler, executive director, Ford Connected Vehicle and Services. “SYNC 3 makes it easy for customers to keep their vehicles up to date with the latest technology and amenities for customers.”

CarPlay, available for owners of the Apple iPhone 5 or later, mimics the iPhone’s touchscreen on the vehicle’s touchscreen interface. CarPlay also allows for better integration between the phone’s apps and the vehicle, letting Ford owners use Siri voice controls, Apple Maps, Apple Music, iPhone and Messenger, along with several of their favorite third-party apps. Full use of Apple CarPlay will require a hardware update installed at a local dealership.

If you’re an Android user, Android Auto gives you similar integration between your Ford and Android 5.0 or higher device. This means drivers will be able to use, among other things, Google Maps, music and voice controls for phone and messaging.

Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration aren’t the only things to look forward to in system update 2.2. Owners will see better navigation searches, better Bluetooth pairing, improved voice recognition and “Ava,” a new voice for SYNC prompts.

Updating your SYNC 3 system is easy. This “over-the air” update will happen automatically when your vehicle is connected to a Wi-Fi network. No driver interaction is required, and your vehicle doesn’t even have to be running. If you do not currently have over-the-air updates enabled on your Ford, your owner’s manual will have detailed instructions on how to do so.

Alternatively, Ford owners who do not wish to enable over-the-air updates can get the latest SYNC 3 versions via a USB memory stick, or by visiting a Ford dealership.

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Last edited by 2b2; 06-26-2017 at 08:41 PM.
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