Ford To Introduce SYNC To Taiwan In New Ford Focus
- Ford will bring its award-winning Ford SYNC® in-car connectivitysystem, powered by Microsoft, to Taiwan in the new Ford Focus
- Ford’s voice-controlled in-car communication and entertainment system, which will be available in Mandarin, allows for a total hands-free environment
- Customers can connect to their personal mobile phone via Bluetooth, call friends or read and reply to messages though the voice control system
TAIPEI, Taiwan, June 4, 2012 – Ford Motor Company announced today that it will bring its award-winning Ford SYNC® system to Taiwan in the new Ford Focus, allowing customers to make phone calls or play their favourite music using Mandarin voice commands.
The new Focus will be the first Ford vehicle in Taiwan to feature the SYNC connectivity platform, which will have voice recognition in two available languages – English and Mandarin.
Using the hands-free technology of SYNC, powered by Microsoft, customers can connect almost any mobile phone or digital media player to their Focus via Bluetooth® and USB connection respectively. Taiwanese drivers can use either steering wheel-mounted controls or voice commands to manage SYNC’s features, keeping their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.
“We’re really excited to be further expanding SYNC to more Ford customers across the region, and even more excited that it will be available in Mandarin,” said Dave Schoch, chairman and CEO of Ford Greater China.
“At Ford, we are committed to bringing the best global technologies to our customers and making them user-friendly. SYNC in Mandarin delivers value to the customer through smart and convenient features that help keep them connected to their digital lives in a safer, simpler and smarter way.” added Thomas Fann, president, Ford Lio Ho Motor Company.
Originally introduced in North America with three languages, Ford is working with industry leader Nuance Communications to expand the reach of SYNC globally with an additional 16 languages, providing voice recognition capability in more languages than any other automaker offering voice control.
SYNC is now installed in more than 4 million Ford vehicles. With this popular technology launching across Europe and Asia this year, Ford projects an additional 9 million vehicles will be equipped with SYNC by 2015.
SYNC can recognise up to 150 unique voice commands in either Mandarin or English. This allows users to take fewer steps and utilise more conversational commands to control SYNC features, making it easier to access more content by voice.
Nuance’s natural text-to-speech technology is also behind “Samantha,” the female voice of SYNC, providing drivers with a more natural, conversational experience with their Ford vehicle. All of these refinements are designed to encourage drivers to take advantage of the hands-free capabilities of SYNC and keep their focus on driving.
Ford and Microsoft have worked together for nearly six years to develop an integrated communications and infotainment system that connects drivers and passengers to their digital lifestyles.
“Ford has had a longstanding partnership with Microsoft, and together we have been pioneers in developing and delivering world-class voice-activated connectivity systems for Ford customers around the world,” said Schoch.
At the heart of SYNC is Microsoft’s Windows Embedded Automotive, a powerful and reliable software platform which allows Ford to deliver the most comprehensive package of control and connectivity options, as well as innovative features and functionality that deliver an engaging user experience for customers.
“Microsoft and Ford share a common vision where drivers are connected to the people, information and entertainment they care about while they are driving, all in a safe environment,” said John Boladian, marketing director for Windows Embedded APAC at Microsoft Corp. “The platform makes it possible for Ford to more nimbly upgrade the system to keep pace with new market trends and customer demands.”
Ford’s open platform approach to mobile device connectivity has helped SYNC stand out in the industry for its ease of use, allowing for continuous improvement of the user experience. Unlike embedded connectivity systems, SYNC does not allow access to the user’s stored contact information unless his or her phone is connected, hence ensuring a high level of privacy.
Using Bluetooth technology, SYNC can wirelessly connect up to eight different mobile phones to the new Focus through a process called pairing. Once paired, SYNC will automatically transfer all the names and numbers in the phone’s contact list to the in-vehicle system.
A microphone inside the cabin allows consumers to use their mobile phone hands-free while driving. Making a phone call is as simple as pushing a button and saying someone’s name. SYNC also enables Focus customers to continue their mobile phone conversation as they get into the car – without the need to hang up – as the system will instantly connect to the Bluetooth®-enabled phone once the car is started.
By seamlessly integrating with the mobile phone, SYNC includes the same features offered on the phone, including caller ID, call waiting, conference calling, a caller log, contact list, a signal strength icon and a phone battery charge icon – all conveniently shown on the new Focus’ centrally-located display screen.
SYNC can recognise the user’s ringtone on supported phones and play it when a call comes in. If unique ringtones have been selected to identify specific callers, SYNC will automatically play those too.
When connected to a compatible phone, SYNC can even retrieve text messages and read them aloud, including popular abbreviations and emoticons such as LOL (laugh out loud) and :-D (smiley big smile). Using voice activation, the driver can also send a reply from a predetermined list of 15 responses while on the move.
Other than making and receiving calls, SYNC gives the driver full hands-free control over portable media players and USB storage devices. Users can browse their music collection by genre, album, artist, playlist or song title using voice commands. SYNC can even put together a playlist of the music the driver is in the mood for with the “Play similar” command or inform the driver of the song that is currently playing with the “What’s this?” command. The SYNC USB port also simultaneously charges the player as the music is being played.
Additionally, SYNC can wirelessly stream the user’s music collection on the mobile phone to the new Focus’ sound system via Bluetooth. All music played through SYNC is high-resolution digital quality.
About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 166,000 employees and about 70 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit http://corporate.ford.com