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Ford SYNC Fails Gracefully

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One of the true tests of how well mobile tech works, is how it handles a real world failure. While using the Ford Taurus with Microsoft SYNC technology on our Great American Road Trip 2.0 I had the opportunity to find out how the car, which is as much a computer as a means of transportation, handled a failure caused by user error — a dead battery.

Halfway through our trip when I parked the car late at night I was in a hurry and didn’t realize that I had switched the headlights from auto to always on. I did notice the next morning when I tried to unlock the car by touching the numbers on the door or using the remote and nothing happened. Thankfully the keyfob for the Ford Taurus has a hard key inside it which was able to get us into the car, and eventually the trunk thanks to a fold down backseat, where our jumper cables were.

From there we were able to get a jump from a local couple who happened to be parked nearby. Within a few minutes of hooking up the jumper cables the car was ready to go and to my surprise everything worked perfectly.

The SYNC system remembered our devices and the head unit even remembered the last set of directions we had entered the night before. I was impressed with the ease of essentially restarting the car after an improper shutdown as well as the ease at jump starting the Taurus since it seems newer cars come with the battery covered by brackets or hidden in the trunk.

Hopefully a future SYNC version will offer the option to turn off the headlights with enough juice to start the car one more time or a text message alert when the lights are left on.

For more reviews of Road Trip Gear, check out everything we have on the Great American Road Trip 2.0 and follow the NBRoadTrip tag on Notebooks.com.

Josh Smith is a longtime mobile tech user, currently using a Droid as his primary smartphone. Josh is also an editor at Notebooks.com where he reviews notebooks and other mobile tech. Follow Josh on Twitter @Josh_Smith or email him Josh@Notebooks.com.

4 Comments

  1. markntravis

    August 3, 2010 at 12:05 am

    My car a 2000 Saturn LW2 beeps if I leave the headlights on.

    Ford=FAIL

    • Josh Smith

      August 2, 2010 at 7:23 pm

      I’m pretty sure it was beeping but I was in a hurry. It beeped at other times when I tried to figure out how I left the lights on.

  2. Hmayesh

    August 4, 2010 at 1:27 pm

    All Fords chime if you leave the lights on. The driver must have not heard it on his way out of the car.

    markntravis=not fully informed

  3. macbook

    November 2, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    I thought it was going to be some boring old post, while it actually compensated for my day. I will post a link to this page on my blog. I am convinced my visitors will obtain that very sensible

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