Ford Becomes First Automaker To Offer Mappo, A Travel-Oriented App
Today’s car technology is so cool. I regularly get a chance to experience some of the latest and great in automotive technology. And what interests me most is integration with smart phones that help bring convenience to driver and passenger. My current favorite app is a common one for navigation – Waze.
Waze navigation and features is superior to any other navigation app out there and significantly better than any auto manufacturer’s built-in versions. Here’s a special bit of money-saving advice: don’t pay for the advanced navigation system in any vehicle purchase. It’s just not worth it.
So, what’s with all this raving on automotive technology? Well, Ford announced a new partnership that sounds quite cool and should have a lot of value and appeal.
Ford becomes the first North American automotive manufacturer to partner with Mappo, an app that will run in any Ford vehicle equipped with Sync 3 or Sync 4. You might recall that I was disappointed that the new Ford Bronco Sport only came equipped with Sync 3 instead of the superior Sync 4.
Also, I’ve raved joyfully about how outstanding Ford’s Sync 4 system in the 2021 Ford F-150. So adding another feature to it, like Mappo will only add more merit to it.
Mappo is a new way to explore the world around you through the lens of history, popular culture, architecture, sports and more – all supported by audio content from literary icons, historians, authors, musicians and others. Available with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, the app includes themed routes and is expected to expand quickly through crowd-sourced, user-generated content from people around the world.
“People love telling their friends about interesting places in books, movies and music – now they can share these passions with the world through Mappo,” said Stuart Taylor, global director, Ford enterprise connectivity. “Mappo makes long drives or brief escapes richer experiences, whether people stay inside their vehicle or step out to experience a landmark.”
After supporting development of the app, Ford is the first automaker to offer its customers an in-vehicle Mappo experience. Customers who have vehicles equipped with Sync 3 or Sync 4 technology will be able to use Mappo through voice commands, giving them an easy way to experience the app as they travel. Mappo also will be available for the all-new 2021 F-150, Mustang Mach-E, Bronco SUV and other future Ford vehicles.
How Mappo Works
Mappo launches with more than 30,000 point-of-interest cultural references across more than a dozen major cities in the U.S., Europe and Asia. The app allows you to browse points of interest nearby, or you can use the search box to look up themed routes based on a place, the name of an author or book, or several other filters such as movies, music and history. That means you can find routes that take you through various historical locations in Philadelphia, or find a walking tour through Central Park that highlights famous scenes from literature.
“Mappo developed a new way to consume culture-related content, in a way that is compatible with the most updated generation,” said Deddi Zucker, Mappo founder and CEO. “Our vision is to create unique experiences in every destination.”
While Mappo is regularly adding points of interest to cities around the world, it also allows people to highlight locations in places the app hasn’t directly supported yet. When noting a point of interest, users can upload quotes from books, movies, letters and authors to mark local sites – giving cities and their residents everywhere the chance to provide locals and visitors with curated routes to follow that explore their heritage and legacy.
Mappo integration through Ford’s Sync system
Ford in-vehicle integration makes the experience even easier. Led by the Ford connected vehicle platform and products team in Germany, in-vehicle integration enables seamless, voice-controlled use for customers as they drive, whether they’re looking to discover interesting new places or trying to shed light on underrated aspects of their own neighborhood.
Vehicles equipped with optional navigation technology can even use SYNC AppLink for the unique capability of creating routes to the points of interest found in the Mappo app.
Ford and Mappo worked closely to help ensure that taking your journey in and out of your Ford vehicle is easy as well. Any saved route on your smartphone can be easily selected once running the app inside your vehicle, and you can quickly pick up where you left off – whether leaving a vehicle to explore or coming back to continue to your next destination.
What is your favorite in-car app? How do you feel about new car technology? Are you a fan of it like I am? Leave me your comments below.
Jimmy Dinsmore has been an automotive journalist for more than a decade and been a writer since the high school. His Driver’s Side column features new car reviews and runs in several newspapers throughout the country. He is also co-author of the book “Mustang by Design” and “Ford Trucks: A Unique Look at the Technical History of America’s Most Popular Truck”. Also, Jimmy works in the social media marketing world for a Canadian automotive training aid manufacturing company. Follow Jimmy on Facebook, Twitter, at his special Ford F-150 coverage on Twitter and LinkedIn. You can read the most of Jimmy's stories by searching Torque News Ford for daily Ford vehicle report.