Ford’s Sync Connect App Lets You Start Your Car Remotely

Building on a connected-car technology it first introduced in 2007, Ford today launched an app that will let users remotely lock, unlock, start or locate their vehicles using their smartphones (pictured). The new Sync Connect feature will even allow car owners to, for example, schedule their vehicles to start up at 7:50 a.m. so the interiors are warm and comfortable when they get in to drive to work at 8 a.m.

Ford made the announcement during today's kickoff of the LA Auto Show and Connected Car Expo. The company said it will first bring the new Sync Connect capabilities to the 2017 Ford Escape SUV.

This summer, Ford updated its connected-car technology with Sync 3, which appears in the 2016 Ford Escape and Fiesta. Sync systems are currently in more than 12 million Ford vehicles around the world.

Two-Step Authentication for Security

"The technology helps you seamlessly integrate your vehicle into your lifestyle," said Don Butler, executive director of Ford Connected Vehicle and Services, in a statement. "Get locked out? Cold outside? Forget where you parked? No problem. Just use your smartphone."

The Sync Connect app, which works through a modem built into the vehicle, also allows users to check on the status of some systems, such as tire pressure and fuel, and oil and battery levels. The app uses two-step authentication for security, and requires a user to confirm the system's setup through a touchscreen in the car.

Other features enabled through Sync include voice activation for smartphones, conversational voice recognition, Siri Eyes-Free support for Apple iPhones and an on-board graphical interface. Ford also provides Sync-equipped vehicle owners with five years of free support for Sync services, including subscription-free emergency calling.

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