Ford set a pretty lofty goal this week, which was to add 4G LTE and Waze maps integration into all of its vehicles by 2020 – which is just two years away. The company is planning on doing this with over-the-air updates, but perhaps more interesting here is that the company will be able to remotely update vehicles in the future. Currently, Ford is only able to remotely update the Ford SYNC platform, but this goal would allow it to update much more areas of its vehicles.
Currently, 4G LTE is already available in a ton of vehicles, thanks to AT&T partnering with many auto makers to get its service in all of its newer vehicles. But Ford is looking to take that a bit further and add it to all of its vehicles (and by the sound of it, even older models). The reason for this is to keep drivers' eyes on the road. That is also why Ford wants to add Waze to its vehicles. Ford has been studying how drivers interact with their phones while driving, and found out that the biggest reason for fumbling with your phone while driving is for maps, or trying to get around slow traffic conditions – something that Waze is really good at. This whole move to adding both 4G LTE and Waze into all of its vehicles is an attempt to help keep more eyes on the road.
While many auto makers are looking to autonomous vehicles to make the road safer, Ford understands that the world is still very far from a truly autonomous world right now. And that there are still going to be a ton of vehicles on the road driven by human beings and not computers. So Ford is looking to do what it can to reduce distractions while you're driving. Of course, it hasn't eliminated everything, but it has eliminated a good number of distractions with this change. Ford also mentioned that it wants to push even further into electric vehicles. Stating that by 2021 it hopes to sell more hybrid vehicles than Toyota, who is currently the market leader. Ford is currently in the second spot behind Toyota, but Toyota is planning "more than 10" hybrid models for 2021, so competition could get pretty heated between Toyota and Ford by then.