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QNX to replace Microsoft's problematic software, and it will also be cheaper

It appears that Ford is finally wising up and is looking to replace the Microsoft technology that currently powers MyFord Touch with Blackberry’s QNX operating system, according to The Detroit News. While Blackberry OS 10 is pretty much dead in the water on the smartphone front, Blackberry’s QNX subsidiary is doing quite well. QNX has over 50 percent market share in the automotive world when it comes to proprietary operating systems and its automotive customers include:
  • Acura
  • Audi
  • BMW
  • Chrysler
  • General Motors
  • Honda
  • Hyundai
  • Land Rover
  • Porsche
  • Saab
According to a person familiar with Ford’s plans, its MyFord Touch-equipped vehicles (including existing models) could “easily” be upgraded to use QNX instead of the current, underlying Microsoft technology. As an added bonus, QNX is cheaper to license than Microsoft's software.

MyFord Touch on the Ford Explorer
To say that MyFord Touch — an infotainment system available on many of Ford and Lincoln’s recently redesigned automobiles — is problematic would be putting it mildly. The voice- and touch screen-based system allows users to access many vehicle functions including entertainment, navigation, and climate control.
MyFord Touch (and by association, MyLincoln Touch), which uses Windows Embedded Automotive 7 at its core, has been plagued with problems since its introduction. Drivers have experienced frozen screens, system reboots while the vehicle is in motion, and poorly responsive haptic controls. Ford has rolled out numerous updates to address these issues, and has even taken steps to bring back physical buttons and knobs on some models to appease customers.

Knobs are making a comeback in MyFord Touch vehicles as seen in this 2015 Mustang with MyFord Touch.
The problems have gotten so bad that Ford has been blasted not only by publications like Consumer Reports, but it has also taken a dive in J.D. Power reliability rankings due to MyFord Touch.
A Ford spokesman did not deny the reports to The Detroit News, and was diplomatic by stating, “Ford works with a variety of partners and suppliers to develop and continuously improve our in-car connectivity systems for customers. We do not discuss details of our work with others for competitive reasons. We are absolutely committed to leading and innovating the smart technologies and in-vehicle connectivity that our customers want and value.”

Ford CEO Alan Mulally delivered the one millionth vehicle equipped with Ford Sync to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in 2009. There have now been over 10 million vehicles with Sync/MyFord Touch sold worldwide.
Ford and Microsoft made a big deal about their partnership with Sync and MyFord Touch. Over the course of the relationship, former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and current Ford CEO Alan Mulally became close friends. In fact, the closeness of the two companies and the two CEOs shot Mulally to the top of the list for Microsoft’s CEO position when it was announced that Ballmer would enter into “early retirement”.

Sources: The Detroit News, Bloomberg

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RE: Fan?
By Samus on 2/23/2014 1:05:24 AM , Rating: 1
Funny, I personally think Windows 8 is awesome. If you miss your start menu there are a dozen free apps that bring it back and boot to the desktop. Start Menu 8 being the most common free utility.

Windows 8 offers such huge improvements over Windows 7's kernel, driver model, security, and cloud-accessibility (like my Windows 8 laptop, Windows 8.1 desktop, and Windows RT tablet all sync their user profile (start screens, apps, settings) and Skydrive data.

The problem with Windows 8 is everyone completely lost it when the start menu went missing, when after customizing, it's no longer needed anyway. Microsoft eliminating the start menu forced users to become more efficient, because lets face it, the start menu is a very inefficient way of launching programs.

No other operating system has a "start menu" equal. They have apps screens, and that's it. And so does Windows 8 now.

-iOS/MacOSX have no "start menu" and all apps are launched from the dock.
-Linux has some of the most powerful desktop environments, and only one (KDE) copies the start menu and Windows UI. Most Linux GUI's have a launcher like XFCE or GNOME, similar to the start screen (without tiles) or the Apple dock.
-All mobile OS's depend on a dock and an apps screen. Android and Chrome OS use widgets, much like Windows 8 start screen, without being nearly as interactive.

Now onto the obvious. Windows has had a "dock" since Vista. The problem is most XP migrants don't take advantage of it. Eliminating the Start Menu was one way to force them to use the superior dock so they stop going into the start menu and click away to run a problem. Launching programs went from the seconds to milliseconds. The Start Screen was a necessary evil to replace the start menu and push people onto the dock, while also adding mobile touch support, which everyone will agree is amazing on supported mobile devices.

Much like the Cruze was the delivery platform for the Volt, the Surface was the delivery platform for Windows 8. But that doesn't mean the products they spawned are bad, but for some reason people have a lot of trouble accepting them with no good reason. Windows 8 on the desktop, just like the Chevy Volt, are amazing products and most people who hate them have never given them a chance.

RE: Fan?
By FITCamaro on 2/24/2014 7:47:46 AM , Rating: 2
While many people crowd the dock in OSX with every little thing, some of us are minimalists who don't like to crowd it with every single program on our computer. There is a "Start Menu" of sorts even in OSX where you can bring up a window with all your programs in it (yes from the dock but that's the same as clicking on a start menu then) and launch what you want to.

"The whole principle [of censorship] is wrong. It's like demanding that grown men live on skim milk because the baby can't have steak." -- Robert Heinlein

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