Ford using first over-the-air software updates to its 2016 cars

Some of Ford's SYNC 3-enabled cars are finally getting an update to match the rest of the connected auto ecosystem. Ford announced the update in a release touting the new compatibilities, which will be available to an estimated 800,000 vehicles.

There's good news for anyone with a 2016-model Ford. One way is to simply go to your local Ford dealership and have one of its service employees install the update for you. If you have a Wi-Fi enabled auto, you have to ensure that automatic updating is enabled within Sync 3, then, when it connects to your home network, the update will be downloaded. The USB install method is also faster, but the Wi-Fi update option is the start of the company's efforts to really increase its OTA update program, which will be used for security improvements as well as infotainment bumps.

"If an update is available, the system automatically downloads the update in the background over a period of time without any customer interaction", Ford explained in a statement, noting that there's no need to keep the vehicle running for the update to take place.


Android, Android Auto, Google Maps and Google Play are trademarks of Google Inc.

Ford will finally bring smartphone mirroring to its older vehicles running Sync 3, the latest version of Ford's in-car touchscreen infotainment system. If it does not have Wi-Fi hardware, you can go to Ford's website on your PC and download the update to a USB Flash drive, and then plug in that drive in your vehicle to install the software. Users can control Apple CarPlay through the in-vehicle display or via Siri voice control. This marks the first time that Ford will enable one of its updates to be applied via WiFi.

Apple CarPlay works with iPhone 5 and later models with iOS 7.1 and higher. It can happen while the vehicle is off, so long as the auto was connected to said Wi-Fi network while it was running.


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