The latest feature to
be official announced by the Detroit automaker is the addition
of in-car Wi-Fi. By plugging a mobile broadband card, such
as those offered by Verizon, AT&T, or Sprint in the U.S. into the
USB slot of a Ford vehicle with SYNC, a secure Standard WiFi
Protected Access 2 (WPA2) wireless network will be produced.
feature is sure to excite many in the business community (and more
than a few reporters), who can use the service to get work done while
carpooling to events. Ford cites recent studies as indicating
that one in three Americans would like to use in-car Wi-Fi to check
on email or other services when on the go.
Ford describes the
security protocols attached to the new feature, writing:
Using the SYNC WiFi system, a signal will be broadcast
throughout the vehicle. Default security is set to WiFi Protected
Access 2 (WPA2), requiring users to enter a randomly chosen password
to connect to the Internet. When SYNC sees a new WiFi device for the
first time, the driver must specifically allow that device to
connect, preventing unauthorized users from “piggybacking” on the
SYNC provided signal.
DailyTech was on hand at presentations of Ford's upcoming
vehicles and services on Friday, at which the Wi-Fi features were
first unveiled to the press. At one of the presentations Derek
Kuzak, Ford's global vice president of product development, described
Ford's mindset on the new SYNC platform, stating, "Today we are
thinking and behaving like a consumer electronics company.
People line up at midnight for the latest iPhone, or Blackberry.
We want to get that [level of excitement]. That's where SYNC
As more SYNC features are revealed its clear
how seriously Ford took that mindset during the design process.
Along with EcoBoost, the new SYNC should be a key selling point for
Ford going forward, as it looks to continue to swipe
marketshare from GM, Chrysler, and the foreign automakers.
quote: While I agree in premise, what if the passengers in the car want to use Wi-Fi -- I think that's the whole point of this thing.
quote: I mean, the driver doesn't need it, but I don't see why passengers should be punished from using the service on long trips or whenever they want.
quote: That's where family bonding comes into play. It's not about putting the internet/movie on to shut them up.It's as bad as parents these days that would rather put their kid in front of a TV than take them to the park to play.
quote: I don't need my car company to force me to interact with my family. I am also perfectly capable of deciding when I should and should not be using my phone/laptop. If the state/car company doesn't think I am capable of making my own decisions they should not issue me a license or sell me a car.
quote: There does not need to be a law or hardware override against doing anything and everything that is considered dangerous or stupid. Reckless driving is against the law, that is a good enough catch all law.