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Ford Has A Better Idea — For Ordering Pizza!

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Ford's Sync system (Ford photo)

Ford’s Sync system (Ford photo)

jeffgilbert Jeff Gilbert
Automotive reporter for WWJ Newsradio 950 and CBS Radio News....
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LAS VEGAS (WWJ) - Ford and Domino’s Pizza are about to take the concept of the “drive through” to a new level.

They’ve come up with an app that allows you to order a pizza using simple voice commands through Ford’s Sync connectivity system.

“This is, no question, one of the coolest in a long list of recent technology innovations for Domino’s,” said Patrick Doyle, Domino’s Pizza president and CEO. “To be able to work with a brand like Ford, with its terrific SYNC technology, and offer yet another way to bring our ordering app experience to life makes it all the better.”

While ordering a pizza is not exactly a complex task, this is one of many apps that Ford and other carmakers are offering to make the driving experience easier and safer.

“Consumers are starting to replace the standard things that they would normally do–picking up the phone and calling their local pizza joints–and instead they are starting to do that online, and they are doing that ordering from their mobile device,” said Julius Marchwicki, global product manager for Ford SYNC AppLink.

The Dominos app, says Marchwicki, allows customers to store favorites within the app, and make a very quick order, with a simple voice command.

“You can order that seamlessly and effectively, without having to talk to a person. That’s the kind of instant gratification that customers are getting used to in the digital age.”

Marchwicki says using an in-car app is much safer than trying to order with a smart phone app while driving.

The announcements being made at this week’s Consumer Electronics show in Las Vegas. Among the other apps being unveiled by Ford, are ones that allow you to access your home security system on the road–and one that allows you to more easily pay for parking.

“Parkmobile simplifies the parking experience by eliminating the need to swipe a card or feed coins to a meter,” said Cherie Fuzzell, CEO, Parkmobile. “We are excited to extend the Parkmobile offering to the connected car through our collaboration with Ford SYNC AppLink.

Parkmobile is also a stand alone app on iPhone and Android devices.

Ford is also making the ADT Pulse app available on its Sync system, allowing customers to more easily arm and monitor security systems through simple voice commands.

“ADT is constantly seeking ways to enhance both security and convenience for our customers in an increasingly mobile world,” said Arthur Orduna, senior vice president and chief innovation officer of ADT. “By working together with Ford, ADT is able to provide a safe way for drivers to quickly address their security concerns while on the road.”

Ford and other car companies are reaching out to developers to come up with new apps that improve the driving experience. Marchwicki says consumers have “digital lives” that they don’t want to leave at home.

“What we’re trying to do is make sure consumers can enjoy their digital lives inside the vehicles without taking their hands off the wheel or their eyes off the road.”

Connect with Jeff Gilbert
Twitter: @jefferygilbert
Email: jdgilbert@cbs.com
Facebook: facebook.com/carchronicles

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