Ford announced its car platform based on Windows Embedded few years back. Following Ford, many other automotive companies like Kia and others. Today, Bloomberg reported that Ford is planning to switch from Windows to Blackberry’s QNX OS for their next-generation Sync system. Ford is expecting that this QNX based SYNC system will be less expensive than licensing Microsoft technology and will improve the flexibility and speed of the next Sync system.
Ford has more than 7 million vehicles on the road with Sync using Microsoft’s platform to make mobile phone calls and play music. The consumer satisfaction survey has revealed that Ford’s customers are not happy with progress with their touch screen technologies over the last few years. While Bloomberg is trying to portray that the problem with Microsoft’s platform is the reason for the downfall of SYNC platform, the actual reason is something different.
A former SYNC engineer revealed the following,
It’s good that Ford is ditching Sync… but what killed Sync was Ford not Microsoft. Sync is a forked version of Windows CE that is maintained by Ford (and offshored to a 3rd party vendor for maintenance).
The bugs, the poor UX, it’s all a result of extremely poor execution on the part of Ford. Switching to a new OS doesn’t solve that problem.
Also, many of the complaints on Ford SYNC were over its voice recognition technology which is based on Nuance, not Microsoft’s TellMe.
I’m not sure how switching of underlying platform for SYNC will solve the user experience issues, what do you think?