Ford Is In Sync With The Mobile Future

I saw this demonstrated at the Texas State Fair earlier this year, but found the video on YouTube thanks to the Mobile Messaging 2.0 site. Ford has developed an in-car mobility suite dubbed ‘Sync’ that features complete voice control over your phone and MP3 player. The system was developed in partnership with Microsoft and will be standard in all Lincoln models, and a $400 option in most Ford and Mercury models.

If you’re reading SMStextnews, you probably have a Bluetooth-enabled phone (and if you don’t, stop. Go to the phone store. Get one with Bluetooth, and then come back and finish reading. Please.). Once you have connected your Bluetooth enabled mobile handset to Sync, you can use the voice button on the steering wheel to do just about anything on the phone, including dialling. It also allows you to not only read SMS, but also to speak a response!

The SMS text-to-speech engine is fantastic (though the voice sounds a bit robotic) and even recognizes common acronyms such as LOL and reads them aloud as “laughing out loud.” There’s a nice little video on YouTube showing off the speech recognition features, and giving a bit more information about Sync in general. I wonder when other manufacturers will start implementing systems such as this? I find it interesting that Ford was the first.

Personally, I’m worried about these voices, and seeing a HUGE potential market. What if you could download custom voice packs for your car? I’m not talking about language packs, either. I mean like personalities, accents, etc. If I have a big huge truck, I’d certainly want it to have a different voice from a sportscar.

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