By Justin Reves, Marketing Manager
It’s now been a little over 3 months that I’ve been driving a vehicle with SYNC and MyFord Touch. Like most people who have used these products, there have been some moments of frustration, but I can honestly say that when you learn the system, it’s really great to use. For a lot of people, the learning curve is steep so it’s tough to be able to just pick it up and go. Hopefully I can provide you with a couple of tips that will make your life a bit easier.
Tip #1: Learn and use the voice commands
This one might seem obvious to those who don’t have SYNC, but to those of us who do, certain things are difficult to figure out how to say properly for the system. However, when you get the hang of some of the main voice commands, it’s not only easier to figure out the other ones, but the whole system becomes pretty slick to use.
Chances are, if you’re using SYNC in your vehicle, you spent a decent chunk of change on your vehicle. Do yourself a favour and take an hour to read up on some of the main commands, create and print yourself a cheat sheet of a half-dozen commands you think you would use, and go out to your vehicle and practice them.
Click Here to see the range of commands SYNC offers. You might be surprised by what all you can do.
Remember that certain commands require you to switch to that source first. I.e. if you’re listening to the radio, you can’t say “Track 10” for your CD player. You have to say “CD” then “Track 10” because otherwise it thinks you’re trying to speak to the radio rather than the CD. Same with switching between Phones, Climate, Audio, etc…
Here’s a few of my favourite commands:
“Radio” (Again, only if you’re not currently listening to the radio. If you are just skip ahead to:) “FM 99.9” – This tunes you directly to a station rather than having to search for one or tune directly to it using the screen/knob. Keeps your eyes on the road.
“FM Autoset” – This picks the 6 stations with the strongest signal and saves them as presets. Great for if you’re travelling or have yet to figure out how to setup presets in your system.
“Call Joe Schmoe on Cell” or “Call Joe Schmoe at Home” – Quickly dials a number from your connected phone.
“Climate” (wait) “Max Defrost” then “Climate” (wait) “Rear Defrost” – The quickest way to get your windows clear in our great Canadian winters. Well, other than getting outside and scraping the windows…or using a half-bottle of washer fluid…
“Radio/CD/Sirius/Audio/Phone” “Help” – You can hear all of the voice commands for a certain category by saying the category and “help”. i.e. “Radio Help” or “Phone Help”. When in doubt, use this one.
Tip #2: With MyFord Touch, use your middle finger
No, no, no, not like that. I mean, when you’re pushing things on the screen, try using your middle finger instead of your index finger – especially when you’re hitting the 4 main categories in the corners (Phone, Information, Climate, or Audio). It might just be me, but this works much better for getting to recognize inputs.
Tip #3: With Bluetooth Audio, make sure your phone is unlocked
If you don’t have music on your phone, skip this tip. But if you’re like me and you love listening to your own music rather than the radio, but you hate plugging/unplugging your phone every time you get in and out of the vehicle, use Bluetooth audio. It automatically connects to your phone’s music while it’s in your pocket and you can skip tracks or start/top it with your voice.
I’m embarrassed to admit that I thought it was really flakey in the car because sometimes it would automatically start playing and other times I couldn’t get it to work. However, I finally figured out that if you have a passcode lock on your phone, it can’t automatically play your music for you. In my case, my phone is on a 15-minute timer before it locks it. If I had used my phone recently, it worked perfectly. If I hadn’t used it in a while, it wouldn’t.
In my case, I have to have the passcode so I just unlock my phone on the way to the car. If you’re having issues with your Bluetooth, check it out.
Tip #4: If you’re having trouble figuring out how to SYNC your phone, or do something else with SYNC, search YouTube
There are a ton of videos on YouTube for how to do most things. They give you some good visuals and will get you going in the right direction. Here’s some great specific ones I’ve found:
The Blackberry and Ford SYNC:
The Android and Ford SYNC:
The iPhone and Ford SYNC:
Common Problems and Fixes:
Here’s a playlist that contains 20+ other videos of great tips and tricks for SYNC: SyncMyRide YouTube Playlist