2011 Ford Fiesta to Get SYNC AppLink

American manufacturer Ford revealed today it will become the first automaker to offer hands-free voice control of smartphone apps by integrating the new SYNC AppLink software into the 2011 Ford Fiesta. The downloadable software upgrade will be released on the respective model later this year, but is to be introduced on most SYNC-equipped vehicles next year.

The Android Market and BlackBerry App World are among the leading growth markets for mobile apps. The new SYNC AppLink will allow drivers hands-free control of apps on their Android or BlackBerry smartphones via voice commands and vehicle controls, including buttons on the steering wheel.

"The growth in smartphone mobile apps has been explosive, and Ford has worked hard to respond at the speed of the consumer electronics market,"
Doug VanDagens, director of Ford's Connected Services Organization, said in a release.

"SYNC is the only connectivity system available that can extend that functionality into the car. AppLink will allow drivers to control some of the most popular apps through SYNC's voice commands and steering wheel buttons, helping drivers keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road," added Vandagens.

The first SYNC-enabled apps available later this year include Pandora internet radio, Stitcher "smart radio" and Orangatame's OpenBeak app for Twitter, with additional apps on the way. Updated versions of each app, incorporating the SYNC application programming interface (API), will be available through Android Market and BlackBerry App World.

Ford also announced it is completing beta-testing on the software development kit (SDK) for future SYNC-enabled app development. Once beta-testing is complete, a broader release of the development tools is planned for later this year.

If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram

Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories