USA: Ford Motor Company has announced that AppLink, a feature which gives drivers voice control of smart phone apps, will be unveiledd in markets across Asia Pacific and Africa as part of its voice-activated in-car connectivity system SYNC.
AppLink is a feature of SYNC, and also the only system in the auto industry that can control smartphone apps via voice control. AppLink can access mobile apps on Android, BlackBerry, and iOS smartphones.
AppLink currently enables customers in the U.S. to access leading apps including:
• TuneIn radio – offering access to over 50,000 radio stations around the world
• Stitcher – an app for streamlining radio shows and podcasts directly from smart phones
• Pandora – personalized internet radio service
• OpenBeak – allows users to have Twitter updates read out to them
• iHeartRadio – delivers one free, fully-integrated service: live broadcast and digital-only radio stations, plus user-created Custom Stations
• NPR News – the latest from NPR (National Public Radio)
• SYNC Destinations – a free app that delivers quick, on-the-go access to the latest traffic reports, travel times and traffic forecasts. Ford owners also can use the app to easily send future destinations from their phone to their car for simple, voice-controlled navigation on the road
• Slacker Radio – Listen to over 150 expert-programmed, personalized radio stations, featuring music, ESPN Radio, ABC News, Comedy and more!
• Scout by Telenav – a daily personal navigator that allows drivers to easily and efficiently navigate their commutes, run errands, and discover places around them
SYNC AppLink will deliver similar functionality and benefits to SYNC customers in Asia that it already does for Ford customers in North America, where it is currently available on 10 Ford vehicle models.
Ford aims to deliver an integrated experience with smartphone applications and the vehicle including app control through voice and vehicle switches as well as the ability for the app to display information to the vehicle’s display. This integration occurs through Ford’s renowned Software Development Kit (SDK) that allows smartphone app developers to modify existing apps to work hands-free using voice recognition through SYNC.
Ed Pleet, Director, Connected Services, Ford Asia Pacific and Africa, and Europe, stated that, “AppLink is an exciting addition to our class-leading SYNC system, giving Ford customers access to even more services via voice control. We will continue to work closely with leading developers and companies in local markets and around the world to make existing apps compatible with SYNC AppLink and provide the best services for our customers.”