Ford Goes Open Source To Speed App Development

Doug Newcomb | Wired | March 1, 2013

In the ecosystem gamble of “open” or “closed,” Ford is putting all its chips on open. At this week’s Mobile World Congress, Ford announced it’s releasing the proprietary source code for its Sync AppLink platform to Genivi, an automotive-centric open source alliance.

The announcement follows Ford offering up its Sync AppLink system to competing automakers, and both the Blue Oval’s and General Motors’ courting of developers at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show by making APIs available to outside app creators. In partnering with Genivi, Ford not only widens its outreach to developers, but also opens another front for its Sync platform to become an automotive app standard.

“Ford is a leader in this space and they chose a strategic decision to move like Google did with Android and be as open as possible,” Mark Boyadjis, an analyst at IHS Automotive, told Wired. “Getting these systems embedded and perfected is not something that can be leveraged by Ford or their technology partner alone. This has to be an open environment.”...