Both small and large software development companies have seen huge success in recent years. As the Android and iOS marketplaces continue to grow, consumers look for download both free and paid apps for a variety of purposes. It’s important to note, however, that even many of these free apps help to generate revenue for the developer through advertisements or additional in-app purchases (IAP). It seems like American-based auto manufacturer Ford is taking a lesson from what Apple and Google has accomplished with their marketplaces by allowing third-party software developers to come in and build apps for their in-car system. This will be the first time any car manufacturer has even attempted this, so there’s a lot at stake for Ford. If you’re interested in learning more about this boldly strategic move, keep reading and we’ll give you the latest scoop.
Surprisingly, Ford did a pretty good job at keeping their new in-car system under wraps without revealing any details. It wasn’t until the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that the public became fully aware of this new system. Named the “AppLink,” it would be a voice-activated control panel that would allow drivers to find and launch certain apps without the use of their hands. After all, we know how dangerous texting and driving is, so Ford is trying to work their way around this problem. The driver would simply say what app he or she wanted to launch and the AppLink system would do the rest. Of course voice-activated technology isn’t an original or new concept, as most GPS devices already have this built in. So, what makes the AppLink system different? As stated above, Ford is allowing third-party, independent software developers to come in and work on creating new apps for the AppLink system.
Currently, Ford’s AppLink system is in Beta testing mode, so there’s still plenty of bugs and kinks to work out before taking it public. With an influx of developers working on the platform, however, it’s likely it will help speed things up a bit for Ford. Even if it’s not the developers’ intentions to find bugs, they will still come across them and hopefully report them to Ford IT workers. So, when can we expect to see the voice-activated AppLink system in Ford cars and trucks? There’s no set date yet, but analysts predict it could happen within the next year, so keep your eyes and ears peeled for any new updates.