Nine auto makers partner with Apple for ‘Eyes Free’ Siri integration

“The launch of iOS 6 will bring greater automobile integration to the iPhone with “Eyes Free,” a new feature that will allow a car to bring up Siri voice control,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider.

“With Hands Free, the iPhone screen stays off, so it will not distract the driver,” Hughes reports. “Since Siri talks back to a user out loud, drivers can control many functions on their iPhone with just the press of a button and the use of their voice, allowing them to keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road.”

Hughes reports, “The full list of auto makers shown by Apple at Monday’s keynote is: BMW, General Motors, Mercedes-Benz, Land Rover, Jaguar, Audi, Toyota, Chrysler, [and] Honda.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Where’s Ford? Oh, right, they’re in self-inflicted hell. Smirk.

Related articles:
Stung by plummeting quality ratings, Ford to upgrade glitch-prone Microsoft-designed ‘MyFord Touch’ systems – November 7, 2011
Microsoft’s confusing, buggy Sync sinks Ford’s J.D. Power quality ratings – June 23, 2011
Ford: Apple iPhone compatibility coming to SYNC AppLink-capable vehicles in early 2011 – December 23, 2010
When crap collides: Ford and Microsoft team up for in-vehicle operating system – December 29, 2006


      1. Passing through Europe back in the 1970s, I was struck by how nice the Euro Fords were, compared to the crap we had in the US. This was most dramatically demonstrated in the Granadas. The Euro Granada was impressive – nice engine and chassis, great looks, nice buckets and instrumentation. The US Granada was a POS.

        Given that Ford’s new Fusion will be almost identical to the Mondeo, I look forward to checking it out when it’s released later this year. That it uses Sync (Microsoft) is a mark against it. But I’m considering an Audi A4 as well where Siri integration would be a plus.

      2. Ditto. My friends in their Ford lie to show me ‘Look,voice recognition just like Apple’. They always have a pained look in their eyes when it works like shit (if at all). I try not to snicker but like the song, Oh Lord, its hard to be humble….

  1. Noticeably missing is Ford whose MyTouch is done by Microsoft. This is why Ford owners need to pull a fuse to reset MyTouch which regularly bombs. If an upgrade comes out, the owner must make a service appointment.

    1. To be fair, that last comment isn’t true. My neighbor has two fords (poor bastard) and the latest Sync update came on a USB stick and he did it himself in his driveway.

  2. Problem is, this is for new cars.. Apple should make a small add on for old cars, like a Bluetooth speakerphone.. Or earpiece.

    I have zero interest in any of these makers anyway, and not looking for a new car anyway.

  3. I have Microsoft Sync (basic, not the MyTouch, which didn’t exist when I bought the car) in my 2008 Focus. It works great.

    That being said, as soon as I saw Apple’s announcement, I knew Ford wouldn’t be on the list, and I was a sad panda. I wonder if Ford has a contractual obligation to M$, and they can’t have both Sync and a Siri button, or if they’re just being stubborn in an attempt to defend their choice?

      1. Ford…OK. Ford + Microsoft? No way.

        Microsoft has long treated Mac users as second class citizens, taking money from our wallets with one hand while stabbing us in the back with bug-ridden apps, intentional incompatibilities, critical missing (or even removed) features, and gaping security holes. I will not willingly support Microsoft. Therefore, there is no Ford in my future.

    1. I yell at my Sync system all the time, it get even basic phone commands wrong so often it’s not funny. I bought it on the recommendation of Leo Laport. Forgot he was a paid shill. The iPhone support in Sync sucks, there is no reason it couldn’t read my texts to me, and maybe even let me answer with canned responses, it does with lesser phones but because it’s Micrsoft they won’t support it.

  4. I have a Honda. It didn’t come with BlueTooth or iPod but I was able to add it with a Mediabridge bluetooth device. I just hope they update the software to make one of the steering wheel buttons work Siri.

      1. ’99 CRV EX 140K miles. Only about half done, in my estimate. Some parts are getting hard to find. Waiting for a Honda with a series hybrid configuration. Or maybe a CNG fuel cell. Hope springs eternal.

          1. Yes, I think you are right, much as that might disappoint T. Boone Pickens. I saw an article about a diesel fueled fuel cell being developed at Yale for the Army. I hope it pans out.

    1. I added the DICE MediaBridge to my 06 BMW 330Ci, plus the iPhone dock which replaced the ashtray at the front of the center console just in front of the gearshift lever. Works great, although scrolling is a bit slow.

      My biggest disappointment is that Siri absolutely does not work with the built-in BMW Bluetooth. It seems like there is enough lag between the car activating the iPhone that Siri can’t hear what’s being said, or it can’t hear it over Bluetooth instead of the mic. I hope this is corrected in iOS 6.

      1. Just curious about why you used the “Government Motors” jab, pap… Do you believe that GM should have been allowed to collapse and exacerbate an already bad economic situation? Would you have accepted the results of that decision with aplomb? Or would you have griped about the resulting increase in U.S. unemployment and negative impact on the economy?

        1. kingmel, without a bailout, GM would have been reorganized in bankruptcy court. They wouldn’t have disappeared. The only difference is that taxpayer money would not have been lost and the unions would not have been given part of the company. Otherwise, the result would have been the same.

    1. That is an ignorant statement. Of the list, only Toyota and Honda produce consistently high quality vehicles and have been for decades. Ford, which isn’t on this list yet manufactures at an almost equivalent high quality level as Toyota–it just costs Ford more to produce than it does Toyota. Ford hasn’t fully incorporated “lean” production yet–an issue both from a “white” and “blue” collar standpoint. Oh, and Cadillac produces high quality vehicles which is a far cry from saying GM also does the same. Only the Cadillac division has implemented lean. Just because some of those vehicles are considered “luxury” hardly means that the owners won’t be on a first name basis with the dealership’s service manager.

  5. “Where’s Ford” was exactly my reaction when I saw the keynote.
    I’m embarrass for the American auto maker.

    (then again, I said the same thing about Microsoft stores)

    1. True, but VW isn’t on the list.

      Jaguar and Land Rover are both part of Tata, so neither of them are independent makes either, but they listed them.

      The average person doesn’t even realize all the consolidation that has happened in the auto business.

    2. Also, Chrysler is owned by Fiat, and neither Fiat nor Alfa Romeo are on the list. However, I expect more auto makers and brands will announce compatibility before iOS 6 is released or right around the release date.

  6. Being a business traveler for my company over the last 12 months, and having rented at least 6 different makes, I can honestly say my worst experience has been with Sync. The easiest in my opinion was a Toyota, but I thought the Dodge Journey had the best display.

  7. Actually, Siri largely works right now, shy of integrating with the Nav system, in Benzes for sure, and in most other vehicles I’ve tried with Bluetooth. When it’s connected, activate Siri using the iPhone button and have her read and send texts, etc. etc.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.