Ford Confirms Apple CarPlay Will Still Be Available, Despite Android Auto Deal

Ford Motor Company, in a blog post on Medium earlier today, announced a partnership with tech giant Google that aims to add more value to its customer experience and help the veteran automaker keep up with the ever-evolving automotive industry of today.

In the blog post, Ford announced the inception of Team Upshift — a collaborative unit made up of employees from both Ford and Google that will utilize resources from both companies to modernize Ford, its products, and its user experience, and pave a data-driven path towards the future.

Ford also revealed that it would adopt Google Cloud as its preferred cloud provider moving forward, giving the vehicle manufacturer access to Google’s top-of-the-line analytics, data services, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and machine learning.

Google will also team up with Ford to “dream up brand new products and services people can’t live without”, according to the post.

Ford lists the key objectives of the partnership as the following:

  • Leveraging Google Cloud to continue our digital transformation and power connected vehicle technologies with a trusted, secure and global cloud solution.
  • Further improving customer experiences by deploying innovative and personalized services.
  • Accelerating the modernization of our product development, manufacturing and supply chain management including exploring the potential for vision AI to aid the training of manufacturing employees and help attain even more reliable plant equipment performance.
  • Fast-tracking the implementation of business models resulting in customers receiving real-time notices such as maintenance requests or trade-in alerts.

From 2023 onward, Ford (and Lincoln) vehicles will leverage Google technologies like Android OS for cars and Android Auto, and come with Google apps and services like the Play Store and Google’s voice technology built-in to them for a modernized, more integrated user experience.

While the announcement made it seem like Ford had inked an Android Auto exclusive, this is not the case.

Ford North America Product Communications Manager, Mike Levine, clarified Apple CarPlay “will still be available as part of Ford’s ongoing commitment to provide choice.”

“Top-tier services. Cutting edge experiences. A commitment to excellence. At the end of the day, that’s what we’re about at Ford — and it’s what this new relationship will help us deliver”, concludes the blog post, pointing towards the direction Ford has opted to drive in for its future.

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