Ford Bringing New IT Capabilities to 2010 Models

 
 
By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2010-01-07 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ford CEO Alan Mullaly and four of his corporate lieutenants addressed the Computer Electronics Show at the Hilton Center Las Vegas to introduce the company's latest IT plans based on the Microsoft-developed Sync operating system and explain how they will benefit customers.

LAS VEGAS -- Ford Motor Co., putting significant time and capital into repositioning itself as a vehicle manufacturer with cutting-edge electronics, is integrating a slew of new IT-related capabilities into its 2010/2011 product lines.

These include more touch and voice access, Wi-Fi connections, cloud services connectivity, and popular preinstalled Web applications such as Twitter and Pandora.

Ford CEO Alan Mullaly and four of his corporate lieutenants addressed the Computer Electronics Show at the Hilton Center Las Vegas Jan. 7 to introduce the company's latest IT plans based on the Microsoft-developed Sync operating system and explain how they will benefit customers.

Back in September 2009, the company previewed some of these features to media members. Since then, however, the Dearborn, Mich.-based auto and truck manufacturer has added several more IT-related items, most of which will be introduced in its 2010 and 2011 models.

Many of the new features Ford is debuting involve touch-screen and voice access, so as to allow a driver to keep his or her mind primarily on the road. Controls on the steering wheel and a dashboard touch screen handle most of the physical input.

In fact, some features-such as the dashboard browser-cannot be operated when the vehicle is moving, for obvious safety reasons.

So many new features involve touch screens that Ford has branded the new vehicles as Ford and Lincoln "MyTouch" models. For example, MyTouch Lincolns-befitting their luxury-car positioning-will sport upgraded sound systems using THX theater-quality stereo and enhanced on-screen graphics, among other premium features.

The touch screens themselves have been redesigned and simplified through color coding for ease of use by the driver, Jim Buczkowski, Ford's director of electrical and electronics systems engineering, told the audience.




 
 
 
 
Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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