05
Oct
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It's pretty unlikely you own either of the vehicles Ford has made compatible with its new MyFord Mobile app, but if you're interested in cars, this is definitely something you're probably curious about in a broader sense. Ford's new app allows you to view your plugin's remaining battery charge, control charging (you can set to charge during the cheapest hours, too), remotely operate and set timers for the climate control, start/stop and lock/unlock, plan trips that get sent to the nav system, and find charging stations. This is all done via AT&T's network through a cellular module in the car. When you buy your Ford EV, a 5-year subscription to the app is included, after which point you'll be charged a fee.

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This is a future of cars I can get behind. I've never been big on complex infotainment systems, or wacky vehicle-sensing radar - a lot of it just never felt ready, or that useful. Now, with smartphones becoming a near-universal appendage for many Americans, it's really cool to see Ford taking that trend and augmenting their vehicles with it. Undoubtedly, this is just the beginning of such add-ons for carmakers. Much like the iPod connector was a "must-have" feature over a decade ago, a vehicle control app will soon be a real draw for consumers.

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Just imagine what you could do with that otherwise difficult, annoying, utterly innavigable entertainment and settings cluster if you had a smartphone app to set it all up? It's like a dream come true. On modern, higher-end vehicles, you could set up the suspension, steering and throttle response, and transmission all from your smartphone. How awesome is that? Even better would be Wi-Fi direct streaming of music from your smartphone to the entertainment system. Imagine setting your in-car navigation, playlist, A/C, and preferred vehicle setup all ready for you before you even step out of the door?

I may not always be quick to get on-board with nifty software tricks, but this is definitely a direction I'd be absolutely thrilled to see automakers go in.

David Ruddock
David's phone is an HTC One. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, imparting a legal perspective on tech news, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • http://trevorsullivan.net/ Trevor Sullivan

    I wonder if they built this on Windows Azure, or Amazon Web Services (AWS), or similar .... can't imagine they host their own "cloud" (I hate that marketing term) infrastructure.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      Microsoft helped make the app, so I'm assuming Azure.