Do You Know How to “Pair” a Cell Phone to a Bluetooth Vehicle System?

Today an auto owner needs to learn how to “Pair” a cell phone to a Bluetooth hands-free phone system in order to show that they are embracing technology. Nowadays a driver needs to be tech savvy! Your friends may ask, “can you pair a cell phone to the Bluetooth system?”

So open your minds to the new technologies and let’s use this lesson to learn how to do this task.

Ford Motor Company has the Microsoft Sync in most of their vehicles now. These instructions are for a non-navigation Bluetooth system found on the Ford Fiesta, Focus, Fusion, Mustang, Taurus, Escape, Explorer, Expedition, F-150, F-250 and F-350.

First, let’s look at your cell phone. Is it Bluetooth compatible? To find out, go to the phone’s main menu and look for the toolbox, the settings or the connectivity folder. Then look for the option that says “Bluetooth” and set it to on. We’ll come back to this setting in a moment.

Sync will NOT pair a phone while a vehicle is in motion. Plan on doing this procedure while parked in the driveway. Turn the vehicle on and turn your radio on. On your steering wheel you will find some toggle buttons. One will have a mouth (let’s call it the “Voice” button), another will have a phone icon (let’s call this one the “Phone” button). On the other side of the Phone button will be another button with the word “OK” on it. This button is used to confirm certain commands. On top center of most dashboards will be an LED screen that will tell you the radio station settings and the phone settings or menu. On the center console will be the radio on/off and volume know, as well as the tuning knob. Other buttons will pertain to CD, AM/FM, Sirius or AUX. You will also find corresponding Phone and OK buttons.

Usually when you push Phone icon on the steering wheel (or on the dashboard), if no phone is paired and active, it will tell you “No Phone Found” on the LED screen in the center of the dash and ask “Do You Want To Connect One?” or “Add a Phone?” or “Add a Bluetooth device?” then hit the OK button. The system will prompt you with the statement “Press OK to begin pairing a phone.”

This starts the Sync system searching for active Bluetooth devices. Go to your cell phone and find the commands to make your phone “Search for a device to add.” Some phones will have additional functions for Discoverability. Be sure to set the phone to be in the “Visible” mode. The vehicle’s Sync system will show a 6-digit PIN code. Look at the cell phone display, if it has discovered Sync, it will prompt you to select this device. The cell phone may ask the question, “Do you want to connect to Sync?” Tell the phone to “pair” with Sync. It should then prompt you to enter the 6-digit numeric code displayed on your dashboard LED screen. Then hit enter or OK on the phone. Within a few seconds the Sync system should respond with a successful pairing notice. Sometimes the cell phone will respond with the question, “Do you want to pair with Sync?” Respond with OK on the phone.

The Sync system will ask if you want to make this phone the Primary phone. Press the OK button if you want this as a Primary, otherwise, use the tuning button to switch the dashboard screen from showing YES to NO, then press OK. On some Ford vehicles Sync will then ask to you want to set the 911 Assist ON. Just press the OK button on the dash or steering wheel to accept, this is a valuable safety application.

Just a note, when you push the Phone icon, it will display the Phone Menu on the dash LED screen. Use the Tune knob to move from topic to topic. Press OK to go to that function. Press OK again to affirm that command. Use the tuning knob to move from Yes to No, and so on.

So, back to the Pairing Process… Next, Sync will ask if you want to Download Phone book. Press OK. Sync does not have a hard drive that it stores your contact information with. This process allows Sync to “index” your contacts so that when you call out your contact’s name as you’ve saved in your phone book it will find it. Sync can hold up to 2,000 phone contacts and the download process may take several minutes. When finished, the dash unit will respond with “Download Complete.” Then you can push and hold the Phone icon for three to four seconds and the system will go back to the radio functions. You are now ready to make and receive phone calls.

Push the Voice button, the voice of Sync system will come on and state “Sync, state your command.” After the tone, reply with “Phone.” The system will say “Phone, state your command” Then say “Call (contact name)” and use the name of one of your phone contacts as you have it saved. For example, “Call John Smith.” If the system recognizes the contact it will respond with “Calling John Smith.” Sometimes the system will respond with a question, such as “Call John Smith, on Cell, on Work or at Home?” Just let the system know which one you want to call.

Or, you may push the Voice button and say “Phone”, the system will say “Phone state your command.” Then say, “Dial.” The system will, like an operator, ask you what number, just tell it the whole number in a steady pace in a normal tone. The system will repeat the number. If correct, then say “Dial” and it will call the number. If the number is incorrect, then say “Cancel” and start the process again.

Watch the road while driving and speaking. Adjust the radio volume knob to better hear your side of the conversation. If the person you are speaking too complains that they cannot hear you, then make sure windows are closed to prevent outside noises. Also, by turning up the volume on your cell phone, it increases the sensitivity of the vehicle’s Sync microphone.

When you’re finished speaking, press and hold the Phone icon button for at least three to four seconds. If you are driving and the phone rings, you will see a Caller ID on the dash LED screen to let you know who’s calling. If you want to answer, just give the Phone icon a quick, definite press and start speaking. If you don’t want to receive the call, just press and hold the Phone icon for three to four seconds.

As a note, the Sync system is a “Voice Activation” program. The system cannot differentiate three-letter words. Mom, Tom, and Ron sound too similar for the system to correctly interpret. You may want to revise your phone’s contact list and change “Dad” to your Dad’s first name, or maybe, “Papa John” – this way the system won’t struggle so much with short names.

This system has to be used for you to better understand it. So give it a try. In time you will get used to the hands-free phone system. Your vehicle’s owner’s manual will offer more details on using the system.

Does China Hold the Key to the Electric Vehicle Market?

While US automotive giants and their more traditional Far Eastern counterparts continue to grab the headlines, with regards to electric vehicles, it seems the Chinese government is behind a major push across the country. There is growing optimism within China that electric vehicles will become commonplace across the world and as such hundreds of millions of dollars have been released by the Chinese authorities to encourage momentum in this market.

China targets 5 million electric vehicles by 2020

The fact that the Chinese government has promised to have 5 million EVs on the road by 2020, a government which very rarely make such predictions, has given great strength to those involved in the Chinese automobile industry. Indeed we recently saw the US authorities give the go-ahead for a takeover of the bankrupt A123 Systems by Wanxiang Group of China for a reputed $256 million. This was a company which had received in excess of $130 million in federal aid and was a groundbreaking developer of electric car batteries.

This move by the US authorities has given hope for the future amid signs that the two political powerhouses of the world may well be willing to work closer in the electric vehicle market. It is unclear exactly why the Chinese authorities have decided to put their weight behind the electric vehicle market this year, especially when you bear in mind relatively disappointing sales worldwide in 2012. However, speculation is rife!

Reducing dependence upon oil

The Chinese authorities have for many years now been reluctant to be overly dependent upon any mineral or any resources with oil taking centre stage. The government has clearly decided that moving towards an electric vehicle market will reduce this dependence upon the black gold and ultimately reduce the power and the hold which the US government has around the world. There are high hopes that this will kick start a new revolution for EVs around the world and indeed improved technology is the key.

It is difficult to say whether other governments around the world have been too short-term in their thinking about electric vehicles, leading to the vacuum of sales in 2012, or indeed whether they were only paying lip service and not investing all of the funds they had previously promised. The fact that the Chinese government is willing to take the lead and Chinese automobile companies are willing to take up the slack in the industry should prompt other governments and other automobile sectors around the world to follow suit.

Will 2013 be the year of the electric vehicle?

Time and time again experts have predicted that “this year” will be the tipping point for electric vehicles which will see them crash through into the mass market. While time and time again we have been disappointed, the market has faded and sales have been disappointing, perhaps the introduction of the Chinese government will be the much sought after tipping point.

Experts will be monitoring very closely sales of electric cars around the world during 2013. They will be monitoring the financial incentives offered by governments around the world although ultimately it will be down to consumers as to whether this really is the year of the electric vehicle.

Conclusion

It is unlikely that other governments around the world will want to be left in the wake of the Chinese authorities having promised 5 million electric vehicles on Chinese road by 2020. As a consequence, as opposed to improvements in short-term technology, battery power, etc it may well be the introduction of the Chinese authorities which finally pushes the EV into the mass market.

Electric Vehicles: The White Elephant That Belongs in the Zoo!

Do not, I repeat, DO NOT, throw away your driving or motorcycle gloves for the sake of driving an electric vehicle.

Electric vehicles are simply a quick fix to the current system. Yes okay, we are all going to have to use less energy which could also arguably include using less plastic junk and being more rational with our everyday vehicle usage. But, electric vehicles are not the answer! Electric vehicle development still belongs in the laboratory and we need to find better ways to store and refuel electricity.

Most of the latest electric cars can do about 85 miles an hour. But, for a range of only about 90 miles and an eight-hour recharge. One lap at the Isle of Man TT and an electric bike is flat! How could you watch that? How could you even justify the action of pulling on a pair of leather motorcycle gloves to do that? The sight of a racing bike leaning into a sweeper without the characteristic sound of accelerating internal combustion power is completely incomprehensible. Sacrilege even! No, only when something better is invented, is it time to develop serious bikes and cars.

Despite their ‘green’ image, electric vehicles are less efficient and more polluting than petrol ones they want to replace. They are not very ‘green’ at all. They are ‘white’ and they are elephants! The electric vehicle craze is no more than a craze. Let’s be honest, the only race an electric bike will ever win is against another. How dull is that? Forget the protective clothing and motorbike gloves…it’d be slower than watching lawnmowers race, or turtles! Why? Because batteries are heavy and inefficient.

Don’t kid yourself by sitting in the ‘electric bike crowd’ and think that by doing so, you are doing your ecological, environmental and ideological best for society. The planet will still warm! Despite what most people believe, a high percentage of the world’s electricity is produced using ‘dirty fuels’ like oil and coal. And this is NOT going to change anytime soon. In fact, the more electric vehicles that are produced, the more the world will rely on ‘dirty fuels’ to keep up with increasing demand for electricity. And another interesting fact for you to ponder is this. Even with silly government subsidies, electric vehicles are all priced higher than their petrol or diesel equivalents.

Electrics as a first car or bike is useless. Sure, you can commute in or on one, but as soon as the weather drops and you flick on the car heater and your range halves to about 30 miles, your likelihood of being stranded on the freeway during peak hour doubles. The answer, commute in your petrol equivalent and do everything else too, at any time, over any distance. Don’t spend all day getting to work!

Pull on your motorcycle gloves for one reason… common sense.

I’m Sitting Back Watching That Time When Everyone Will Rush OTC-FLKI

The market is not happy, it kicked and moaned most of the time as the news went from bad to worse and people decided to feed up a nasty correction. Everyone is moving to solve the issues which ail the world and this from both sides of our planet. Where’s the sensible approach?

Lucky for all, I am neither a political analyst nor a guru of any sort preaching one thing or another. I am but a humble industry analyst and cover the most mundane of industries, the Automobile After-Market Industry; but mundane it is no longer. There’s money to be made here, and the big one’s are handing out both their money and market share to the small industry gems not unlike Falken Industries Ltd, a small company (market cap $ 25 million), brain child of a young Norwegian MBA and traded under symbol FLKI.

Very prudently, the company has been making its moves, it launched in 1997, and since its award winning product conceptions have lined the walls of award winners and the shelves of retailers and users globally. The company is responsible for more than 160 products currently in production. Through the thick and the thin this company moves early and has become an industry model at cost controls and in stemming the flow of its liquidities. Free of debt, it nurtures its business and as it names implies, from high beyond, it pinpoints a market and sweeps upon its unsuspecting prey. All too often, the hard won, century old markets of complacent monster sized competitors – but only a little bit will do you for this flexible instrument of creativity.

We don’t have year ends yet of course but we do have an Internet full of useful information. Just Google “FLKI” (without the quotes) and read on. Management, which tends to be right of Attila the Hun in my humble view, suggest that preliminaries might indicate that sales accelerated 1.9 percent for the month of December – a normally dismal period for that portion of its business dealing with auto-care products, this from 0.6 percent the previous month. My own bet is that sales climbed 10.7 percent in the fourth quarter.

For the first time since 1997, FLKI doesn’t deny acquisition or merger invitations or interest. It’s incredibly creative management doesn’t seem to take lightly its fall into major corporate America but the scuttlebutt suggest that at the $3 or $4 a share people are talking, the company is a done deal. Moreover there does not appear to be a controlling block so that astute competitors could quietly finesses at least positions of up to 4.9% (about 392,000 shares – a whopping $ 80,000 at these prices) before they sprang. The stock a basic unknown to the trading community is selling at 20 cents.

Let’s no forget that FLKI sits with the technology, skill, and purchasing knowhow to tackle a 9.5 billion dollar industrial segment.

As I see it, the market’s inaction, unwitting ignorance of this opportunity can’t last. It is possible because the hapless competitors circling have no possible interest in putting a light on it, and the investment community are too busy licking their wounds or for the smaller part wasting their time on chat rooms. Hapless I say about the competition, because given FLKI’s commanding global lead in product conceptions and branding, its is outrageously cheaper for them to buy the company than to try to take back the market share they have lost, let alone acquire FLKI’s or that of its collaborators.

To me, the market’s reaction is pretty entertaining – I’m sitting back watching that time when everyone will rush – the herd is on its way paying dollars for what they could have acquired for pennies today. I’m similarly amused from my reading of chat room commentary crafted by the know it alls who claim all the wrong thing as a prerequisite to a buy. Result a 1080:1 loss ratio. But say they, it’s the adrenaline rush that counts.

Falken Industries Ltd OTC: FLKI is a diversified industrial conglomerate that operates in Chemicals, Wet Wipe and Biodegradable Technology. Falken Industries Ltd is the concept behind more than 160 products distributed through a network of global platforms and the recipient of trade awards for innovations, biodegradability and environmental and health quality standards.