Getting the most out of your Ford Sync system sometimes means learning more about your smartphone and here are some tips on using your iPhone with the Ford Sync system.
Are you having trouble accessing your iPhone music?
If you have upgraded to a newer Apple iOS, then one of the options is to "back up" and store your music on the Cloud. This uses a process referred to as iTunes Match. Essentially you see the song titles and information on your iPhone - but the music is actually "parked" in the Cloud. The problem is that the Ford Sync system no longer can access this music since it has become part of the Apple proprietary system. If you go to your iPhone's Settings folder... scroll down to the iTunes & App Stores bar, then turn off the iTunes Match button.
This allows your Sync system to access music files. Turn the iTunes Match button back on to back up and store your music from time to time to keep your files current.
Has your streaming iPhone music stopped playing?
If you pushed the Voice button on the steering wheel to access music by saying "Bluetooth Audio" then you can stream music through your vehicle sound system. It streams music, but you don't have enough bandwidth to give voice commands to "Play Artist Bruno Mars."
If you plug your iPhone into the USB port, then you'll have to push the Voice button and say "USB." The Sync system will index the music on your iPhone (or USB jump drive) and after a few minutes, push the Voice button again and when the Sync system says "USB, state your command" then say "Play All." The Sync system will begin playing your music. You can then push the Voice button and say "Play Artist Miranda Lambert" and it will find and play her music (if you have that in your collection).
So can I play music from Pandora?
If you have a Pandora account on your iPhone, then you can push the Voice button and say "Bluetooth Audio." The system will reply "Bluetooth Audio" and then go to your iPhone and tap the Pandora icon (or other streaming music App) and then as that App starts to play, your music will mute and the streaming music will play.
Once again, if you plug your iPhone into USB, then you have to give your system a voice command of "USB" for the system to change the content it is accessing.
Can I get voice-to-text text messages read to me?
If you have an iPhone 4s or an iPhone 5, go to your phone and push the Home button (the large button on the lower center of your phone). Hold the Home button for a few seconds and you will hear a tome on your phone (and the Sync system). Say, "Read Text Messages." Your iPhone's Siri will look for messages and read them to you. If you want to send a message, push the Home button and say "Send Text Message." Your Siri will ask who you want to send to and what you want to say. Just follow instructions. In fact, you can push the Home button and ask Siri any question. When you are finished with Siri, just push and hold the phone icon on your steering wheel and "hang up" on the call.
So how can I get voice-activated GPS instructions through the Sync system?
Let's say you want to use your iPhone 4s or iPhone 5 App, such as Google Maps, to get turn-by-turn instructions. Push the Voice button on the steering wheel and say "Bluetooth Audio." Then go to your iPhone and activate your GPS App. It will "speak" the instructions over the Sync system. Push and hold the phone icon on the steering wheel to hang up the voice instructions.
On-going support for your iPhone and Sync...
Complete power down your iPhone at least once a week. Keep the iPhone off for at least a few minutes. Then power it back up.
Go to your phone's main screen. Then push the Home button twice. The screen will slide up. You will see a group of App icons. Push and hold your finger on one of the Apps until a red circle with a white minus symbol appears. Then tap the red circle and the Apps will be turned off. Most people will find that every time they open an App that it stays on "in the background." This uses more power and drains your battery more quickly. By turning off your iPhone Music App you won't have the music starting to play automatically every time you start up your vehicle.
By the way, if you are playing Bluetooth or USB music then you can push one of the Audio buttons on your vehicle to change to AM/FM, CD, Aux or Sirius as a music source. Or, you can use the Media (or Source) buttons (if you have them on your vehicle) to access any of the Media available to your vehicle.