If you just followed the press release and the early blog posts everything is pretty awesome in Ford land. Having established an early lead in talking about telematics, Ford’s partnership with Microsoft on the SYNC platform would seem to be moving along nicely. Ford announced 3rd party app integration with the SYNC voice recognition technology last week, so the release of a directions app SYNC Destinations should indicate they are on a roll.
From the press release:
- SYNC® Destinations is a free smartphone app that gives SYNC Traffic, Directions and Information (TDI) users mobile access to search for and save destinations to their cloud-based SYNC Services account for easy access when back in the car
- App includes Predictive Traffic, powered by Ford’s best-in-class traffic information supplier INRIX, providing users with recommended departure time, travel time and ETA based on current and expected traffic conditions along their route
- Free SYNC Destinations app is available today for Apple iPhone, Apple iPad and Android-based devices and can be downloaded through the Apple App Store and Android Market
- SYNC Destinations is available to owners of 2010-2011 SYNC-equipped, TDI-capable vehicles who have a registered and active TDI services account on http://www.syncmyride.com
“SYNC Destinations leverages the power of your smartphone to manage a user’s SYNC Services account and to plan ahead, sending destination locations to your car, and knowing what’s happening on the road ahead of you before you even get behind the wheel,” said Dave Gersabeck, SYNC TDI product manager.
Some have pointed out that’s its odd that the app doesn’t use Bink and has not been slated for Windows 7 even though its a MSFT platform. Others have said that the predictive route feature sure would have been hand for people in the north east last week.
However, when you go to the horses’ mouth things are a bit different. Hitting the iTunes store today the app has 18 ratings and 11 reviews and its 11:00 est. 9 of the ratings are 1 start and the most talked about situation in the reviews is that many people can’t sign in.
From the reviews: (which I can’t link directly to but you can go here)
“Just as the 2011 Sync system is defective causing a nationwide update that took 3 months to get done and into dealerships… here is another defective Ford Sync product. I have an active Sync TDI account good for 33 more months on my 2011 Edge. I’m looking at it right now on the website. Yet like others this crap app tells me it can’t confirm the account and won’t go beyond the log in screen.”
I can confirm that the big update took three months to roll out to dealers. I can also confirm that the update did not fix the major flaw that is generating so many service calls. One thing I found particularly funny is that the dealerships have to download the update to the computers in the car and its apparently pretty big so it takes a long time. But in order for the computers to be on the car has to be running. So for the one example I know about the car was running for 8 hours while the techs updated the system, that didn’t fix the problem. Ops.