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MAJORITY OF FORD MODELS SOON
TO OFFER VOICE CONTROL AND WIRELESS CONNECTIVITY
Cologne, Germany, November 17, 2005
The new Ford Focus ST is the latest car in the
Ford model range to benefit from state-of-the-art voice control
of onboard systems and wireless connectivity. Ford of Europe will
introduce this technology to the majority of its vehicle lines by
Bluetooth © wireless technology for mobile
phones is an essential element of this advanced voice control
system and it will be offered as an optional extra on the audio
systems across the majority of models in the Ford portfolio, from
the Ford Fiesta to the Ford Transit.
Voice control and MP3 connectivity
Bluetooth © wireless technology, coupled
with voice control of onboard systems, provides a convenient and
safe way to operate mobile phones, climate controls and
entertainment equipment while driving.
Ford also offers customers the ability to
connect portable audio devices via a conventional 3.5 mm audio
connector that is available with most Ford audio systems. This
enables a wide range of entertainment systems, from portable Mp3
players to mobile phone based entertainment centres, to be
connected through the car's factory-fitted audio system.
"Today's MP3-players like the Apple
iPod, with up to 60 gigabytes of storage, allow you to create
your own library of music with play lists comparable to more than
500 conventional CDs," said Christof Kellerwessel, Ford of
Europe's Chief Engineer for Electrical Systems. "The ability
to connect such devices to your in-car audio system means instant
access to your personal choice of listening material without
having to carry around large quantities of CDs."
Fiesta, Focus and Mondeo: Already
Bluetooth © capable
Ford Mondeo, Ford Focus and Ford C-MAX have
had optional Bluetooth © and voice control systems based on
Nokia technology since May 2005 in combination with various Ford
audio systems. The new versions of the Ford Fiesta and Ford
Fusion have also adopted this technology and they are the first
models in their segment to offer this premium technology. Ford's
Transit range will offer Bluetooth © connectivity to commercial
vehicle customers from early 2006.
For its existing model lines, Ford offers
three optional Bluetooth © package variants providing varying
levels of operational comfort. They all offer hands-free mobile
phone operation and include a factory-mounted digital signal
processing microphone specifically designed to optimise voice
control. The audio system's onboard speakers are used to achieve
the best possible sound quality for all applications. Unlike
aftermarket kits, the Ford solution is fully integrated into the
vehicle's existing electrical control systems, which allows full
use of the familiar remote radio controls. Ford offers systems
based on the feature-rich 2nd generation of Bluetooth ©
technology that supports a large number mobile phones from Nokia
and other manufacturers.
The three optional systems offered by Ford
- Ford interface type A: a
charging/connectivity cradle for individual mobile phone
types, ingoing display of SMS text messages on the radio
- Ford Bluetooth © interface
type B: Wireless connection between Ford audio
system and a Bluetooth ©- equipped mobile phone. The
phone does not have to be plugged into a charging cradle
but may remain in the driver's pocket or handbag if
desired. Modern mobile phones, with their typically long
battery life, will allow use of the phone for several
days in combination with the Ford Bluetooth © Set type B
without needing to be recharged. In addition, interface
type B offers voice control capability for the mobile
phone and, depending on the vehicle specification, for
climate controls, radio, CD player, CD changer and
- Ford Bluetooth © interface
type C: Provides all the functionality of the
type B systems, but includes an additional charging
console for certain mobile phones. Type C allows the
operation of the mobile phone's address book over the
remote radio stalks plus all the voice control functions
of type B.
Bluetooth © Technology
Nokia's Bluetooth © technology uses radio
waves for the wireless transfer of data between compatible
devices in an operating range of up to 10 meters, using a 2.45
gigahertz band. Such wireless interfaces are also used to create
connections between phones and PC or laptop computers, phone and
PDAs and between mobile phones.
Two Bluetooth © devices, for example a
mobile phone and a Ford audio unit have to agree to 'pair', that
is to share a communications profile in order to communicate
successfully. The devices can from this pairing-process onwards
'see' each other via a start-up protocol whenever they are both
switched on and within reach of the Bluetooth operating range of
around 10 metres.
Once the simple pairing process has
installed one or several mobile phones as partners of a Ford
audio system, the system will always reconnect to the one used
last each time the system is activated. Any other phones already
installed, for example different mobiles for each family member,
can be easily reactivated by the simple touch of a button.
Once paired, the connection protocol allows
the Bluetooth © units to interact without interference from
third parties. Once a Bluetooth © connection has been
established, no other party can participate in the in-car
communication, allowing discreet operation free from unauthorized
Nokia's Bluetooth © technology uses a
coding technology called 'spread-spectrum frequency hopping' in
which paired Bluetooth © devices 'hop' in synch between 79
randomly chosen frequencies 1600 times per second - making
eavesdropping on the connection virtually impossible.