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Ford Readies Smartphone-Sync Link

Dearborn, Mich. – The 2011 Ford Fiesta will be the


vehicle from Ford to control select Android and BlackBerry smartphone apps, the
company said.

The Fiesta will be available later this summer.

In calendar 2011, smartphone-app control will be available on all
new Sync-equipped vehicles, and apps for the iPhone and other smartphones will
become available that year as well, the company said.

Through the Fiesta’s Sync system, drivers will be able to use
voice commands or the Fiesta’s control switches to control Sync-enabled apps
residing on Bluetooth-connected smartphones. The first Sync-enabled apps — Pandora’s
Internet music-streaming app, Stitcher’s Internet news and podcast app, and
OpenBeak’s Twitter-streaming app with text-to-voice conversion — will be
available shortly after the Fiesta’s launch for Android and BlackBerry phones.
The apps, incorporating the Sync application programming interface (API), will
be available through Android Market and BlackBerry App World for download.

On the Fiesta’s 4-inch in-dash display, drivers will be able to
view the names of all Sync-controllable apps residing on their smartphone, a
spokesman said. To control the smartphone apps, Fiesta purchasers must first
download AppLink software from Ford’s Web site to a PC, side-load the software
to a USB drive, and plug the USB drive into the Fiesta.

Ford is offering its API to
third-party developers to create other Sync-controlled apps.