Automatic Labs and Ford Motors are announcing today a new partnership to bring the Automatic Link accessory to more people and add more functionality to the platform. Ford Motors and Automatic Labs will work together to develop features to both the Automatic platform and Ford Sync, the automaker’s in-car infotainment system.
By integrating with Ford’s Sync platform, for example, Automatic users will be able to connect the in-car Sync button to the popular If This Then That automatic service. This turns the push-to-talk button into a one push button for a variety of programmable automation tasks in the car. The two companies say more enhancements will roll out soon through the partnership.
Ford says Automatic support will extend to the following makes and models: 2011-2015 Ford Explorer, 2013-2015 Ford Flex, 2011-2014 Ford F-150, 2011-2015 Ford F-Series Super Duty, 2013-2015 Ford Taurus, 2013-2015 Lincoln MKS, 2013-2015 Lincoln MKT, 2011-2014 Lincoln MKX and the 2015 Lincoln Navigator.
We first tested out Automatic’s ability to improve your driving habits and save you fuel expenses last year. Earlier this month, Automatic introduced a new dashboard for users to view driving data captured by the accessory and application on the web for the first time. Automatic also introduced version 2.0 of its iPhone app in July, which added fuel gauge reading for supported cars to the platform.
The Automatic Link is available for $99 from Amazon, Best Buy, and Apple; the Automatic app for iPhone is available for free on the App Store. Automatic says its integration with Ford Sync will be available through a future iOS update.
Ford and Automatic Working Together to Support Connected-Car Solutions
Automatic platform will be enhanced to work better with millions of Ford vehicles to provide new and better connected solutions
San Francisco, Calif. and Dearborn, Mich. – Sept. 16, 2014 – Automatic Labs and Ford Motor Company today announced a joint experimental collaboration to improve the driving experience for Ford & Lincoln vehicle owners. Together, the companies will test and develop new features that provide enhanced capabilities to Ford and Lincoln vehicle owners, enabling drivers to opt-in to provide data from their vehicle and use that information to be smarter, safer drivers.
Ford SYNC® already allows drivers to make calls, listen to music and get directions with an optional navigation feature through the touch of a button on the steering wheel—all while keeping hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. Existing technology from Automatic uses a small device and a mobile app to connect a driver’s smartphone to his or her vehicle’s onboard computer. Customers will be given the option to opt-in to Automatic, which will provide data that can help remember where the vehicle is parked and more.
While Automatic’s device has been available in Apple and Best Buy stores since last year, this is the first time the company has teamed up with an auto manufacturer to experiment with its in-vehicle entertainment and communications system.
“Ford’s powerful in-car technology makes working with Ford highly valuable for us,” said Automatic CEO Thejo Kote. “Ford’s interface—coupled with Automatic’s connected services platform—enables us to bring customized one-touch applications to Ford drivers that go beyond the capabilities of either technology on its own.”
The first of several features available to drivers who use Automatic in supported Ford SYNC-equipped vehicles will make Apple’s Siri personal assistant application accessible on Apple iPhone through the push-to-talk button on the steering wheel. This means drivers will not have to reach for their iPhone while operating their vehicle, allowing them to keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.
In addition, Automatic will provide greater convenience to drivers by connecting the push-to-talk button to the “Internet of Things,” enabling access to the popular If This Then That, or IFTTT, web service, which automates actions using the Internet. This allows drivers to use the push-to-talk button to trigger an IFTTT recipe from among hundreds in the web service library. IFTTT recipes range from sending messages to remotely operating home appliances. Users will be able to create their own recipes as well. Automatic will launch additional connected-car enhancements in the coming months.
“Ford is always looking for new ways, including working with other innovative companies, to improve our customers’ experience,” said Don Butler, executive director, Connected Vehicle and Services at Ford. “Teaming up with Automatic was the natural choice given their connected car technology and focus on enhancing the driving experience.”
Ford vehicles supported by Automatic’s technology include the 2011-2015 Ford Explorer, 2013-2015 Ford Flex, 2011-2014 Ford F-150, 2011-2015 Ford F-Series Super Duty and 2013-2015 Ford Taurus. Supported Lincoln vehicles include the 2013-2015 Lincoln MKS, 2013-2015 Lincoln MKT, 2011-2014 Lincoln MKX and the 2015 Lincoln Navigator. Ford and Automatic encourage drivers not to drive while distracted.
“Automatic exists to help people drive safer and smarter,” said Kote. “We’re thrilled to be working with Ford to improve the overall driving experience by connecting our shared customers and their cars to the Internet.
About Ford Motor Company
, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 186,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit .
Automatic turns almost any car into a connected car. By pairing Automatic’s smartphone app and in-car device, drivers are able to enhance their driving experience with a host of connected services on the Automatic platform. Automatic helps customers drive safer and smarter – with applications that diagnose engine trouble, detect accidents and send emergency response, and help customers save money on driving. Automatic is available for sale at Apple Stores, Best Buy, and Amazon for $99.95 with no ongoing service fees. Automatic Labs was founded in 2011, and headquartered in San Francisco. For more information, visit .
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