Skip to main content

Ford Finally Makes it Easy to Use the Waze App in your Car or Truck

After teasing us at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Ford has finally made it easy to use the Waze App, right on the screen in your vehicle. Up until now, iPhone users had to run the navigation app on their cell phones. Now Ford will let you hear the information through the vehicle speakers and see the maps on your screen.


WAZE is the navigation app that has taken the country by storm. It uses crowdsourcing to pick the fastest route, while other users notify you of hazards or police on the road. Up until now, if you were using the app on your iPhone while in you 2018 Ford F-150, the vehicle would silence the app and make you look at the map while driving. Now, Ford will make it easy to see the map on your screen in your dash and you can access all the voice controls.

The only drawback is that your vehicle has to be new enough to have the SYNC 3 version and your iPhone must be running iOS 11.3 or later. If your vehicle is 2017 or newer, it most likely has SYNC 3. Android users have been able to use the WAZE app in their Ford vehicles for a while now.

Keep Your Eyes on the Road and Not on the Phone

Don Butler, who oversees connected vehicle platforms for Ford, says in a statement, “Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for people to access the smartphone features, apps and services they care about most in the car, without having to pick up their device. With Waze, our customers get the benefits they’re accustomed to with the added luxury of experiencing them on a bigger screen.” Plus, they will be able to interact with WAZE using their voice controls, which should make it easier and safer for everyone.

Access WAZE Through Voice Controls

Jens Baron, who works on in-car applications for Waze, says “We’re excited drivers of Ford SYNC 3-enabled vehicles will now be able to use Waze for iOS right from their dashboard, getting access to features like planned drives, alternative routes, talk to Waze voice commands and more. They’ll also benefit from the best routes and most accurate ETAs, thanks to our global community of drivers on the go who update the map in real-time – helping our mission to one day eliminate traffic.”

WAZE is owned by Google. When you use it, you have access to the great Google maps, plus you have the advantage of warnings from other drivers. As a frequent WAZE user, I can tell you that it shaves a lot of time off of your trip, when there are slowdowns or accidents on the road. It has been frustrating trying to use WAZE in a Ford vehicle because it often prevents you from hearing the audio coming from the app, but that will change under the new system.

To use WAZE, you must have the WAZE app downloaded on your phone. You must connect the phone to the vehicle using your USB cord. You will then be able to project the map onto your screen. The audio cues and voice commands can be accessed through the vehicle’s speakers and microphone.

The new set-up will help anyone who uses their vehicle as their office, like many construction workers who operate out of their F-150s. It will especially convenient for anyone who travels alone. WAZE prevents you from inputting information like addresses, unless you are a passenger.

Ford says that its intent is to improve driver’s commutes, reduce congestion and keep people safer. “By working together, the aim is for people to help each other improve the quality of their commute. Waze can help commuters avoid congested roads in favor of other routes, or see when their friends are expected to arrive at their destination. Users can even help each other save a few dollars by sharing fuel prices as they travel, allowing people to navigate to the cheapest nearby station.” Websites like can give you general information, but other WAZE users can tell you exactly what stations are charging along your route. Most importantly, if Ford and WAZE can keep eyes on the road and hands off the phones, it should improve safety.


Marc Stern    May 18, 2018 - 10:51AM

Is that a close representation of the screen that a driver is supposed to interact with? If it is, then there is a problem from the start. It is far too "noisy" or messy for easy understanding. I don't see how this is an improvement or would assist a driver in staying safe. Perhaps the better way to go in a situation like this is to use the voice interface and forget the mapping that could quite possibly cause you to take extra time trying to figure things out. It could be another form of distraction. JMHO.