In-car systems range from one brand to another, which is why some folks simply prefer to use Apple’s option, CarPlay. And Ford is looking to make it even easier to use CarPlay starting in 2020.
Today, Ford announced SYNC 4, the newest iteration of its in-car infotainment system. It’s a modest upgrade over SYNC 3, but for anyone who is a fan of CarPlay the big news is that the new SYNC 4 will support wireless CarPlay support. That means you will no longer have to connect your iPhone to the vehicle via the Lightning to USB cable. It also supports wireless Android Auto from Google.
And Waze is still supported, too.
With more customers pairing smartphones and mobile devices to their vehicles, SYNC 4 offers even more convenience by letting customers cut the cord. For the first time, Ford is implementing wireless implementation of both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as SYNC AppLink apps such as Waze or Ford+Alexa.
As it stands right now, Ford is joining a very small list of automobile manufacturers that support wireless CarPlay right out of the gate (or off the assembly line). BMW is the only other company that supports it right now.
However, third-party manufacturers of aftermarket receivers like Alpine, JVC, Pioneer, and Kenwood support wireless CarPlay if you want to go that route.
So that’s the news as far as CarPlay is concerned. As far as SYNC 4 is concerned, the new infotainment system features upgraded graphic design and user interface, all of which will make it hopefully easier to use. It also supports over-the-air software updates thanks to Ford’s FordPass Connect that offers 4G LTE connectivity, which will also offer a Wi-Fi hotspot to vehicle owners.
As far as when you can get it? Well, Ford is sort of shy in that regard, only saying that the “new SYNC 4 system will be available on select Ford vehicles starting in 2020”. So we don’t know which Ford-branded models will get the wireless CarPlay support just yet, but with those cars likely to be unveiled soon, we should know more in the near future. And some models will have touchscreens that measure up to 15.5 inches!
If you’re in the market for a new car, is wireless CarPlay something you’re actively interested in?