Initiate Siri using Ford Sync without touching iPhone

Scenario

You have set up your iPhone to work with Ford Sync over via Bluetooth, and you can make/receive calls fine.

However, to use Siri over Bluetooth, you have to physically hold down the Home button of your iPhone; you cannot do this using the Ford Sync voice control paddle on the steering wheel.

Solution

  1. Activate the Voice Control paddle on your steering wheel.
  2. Say “Dial Mobile Name”.
  3. After a short while, you will hear the “Siri beep”, and it seems you have to be quite quick to say something, else Siri will cancel itself.
  4. You can give Siri any normal command and it will work over Bluetooth fine. (I have found the volume is quieter than normal for some reason).

I can’t find any mention of this feature anywhere online, so I can only assume it is unsupported. Still, it works, so it’s a great workaround until something better comes along 🙂

Some other useful links:

Comments

  1. What version of Sync are you running? Will this work on Gen1 versions of Sync?

  2. I’m not sure. How can I find that out?
    If it helps, I drive a Ford Focus Titanium, 2011 plate.

  3. This didn’t work at all on my Sync MFT v3.5.1 and an iphone 5 IOS 6.1. I wish it would work.

    • I have an iPhone 5 running IOS 6.1.2, but it worked even when I initially got my iPhone 5 too.

      Siri started several times unintentionally, before I worked out what was happening.
      I use it more and more now.

  4. I have a brand new 2013 Ford Fusion Titanium with the Ford MyTouch and Sync, but couldn’t get this to work. As soon as I pushed the talk button on the steering wheel and stated “Dial Mobile Name”, it response back essentially saying to pick a device; didn’t know what this was. Do I have to say “phone” first?

    • No. I just have to say “dial mobile name”. Try saying it without capitals 😛

      Joking aside, maybe it only works on my model.

  5. Gokenkihan says:

    I have tried this several times with no luck. 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid. It’s the first gen Sync without MyFord Touch. I was hoping this would work. Adam, is it Sync that is recognizing the command: “Dial Mobile Name”? Are you sure you don’t have a contact that sounds like ‘mobile name’ and Sync is just interpreting it?

    • I’m positive. I say “dial mobile name” through Sync, there’s a short pause, then I hear a feint beep when Siri is ready.

  6. I have a 2013 F150 and iphone 5, i have synced and i can play audio through truck audio, my problem is when i first sync i can push the home button on phone and through truck i can dictate and send text. However as soon as I turn truck off and get in next time it doesn’t work. I would have to re & re phone again for it to work. Anyone else have this problem and know what to do to solve this issue?

    • Sorry, I have no idea. Anyone else?

    • This is a compatibility problem between SYNC v3 and iOS 6 (all versions). Something gets corrupted in the SYNC system either when you turn your car off or start it back up again, and as a result, when you turn the car back on, it will not be able to connect to the iOS device, neither via Bluetooth (you get a message saying no compatible bluetooth device found) nor USB (it just gets stuck on indexing forever), until you do a master reset of the SYNC system and a clean pairing of the iOS device, once again, for either Bluetooth or USB. Following a master reset, everything works fine until you turn the car off again and everything has to be reset again.

      As of my latest conversation with SYNC support, Ford does not have a patch for this. They are working on it, but as of now, it is unclear whether the hardware in many vehicles sold new as recently as last year is even capable of supporting Apple’s new external media player protocols introduced in iOS 6 for the newer devices’ Lightning connector. From what I understand, this new protocol is digital, as opposed to the old 30-pin connector that was analog, and if the device at the other end of the cable doesn’t have a chip that correctly supports this, compatibility will be limited, at best, regardless of any software updates.

  7. I have a 2012 Ford Escape Limited with Sync Gen1 – V3.2.2 and this doesn’t work. I think maybe it has to be My Ford Touch? I don’t know. I’m sad, though. 🙁

    • I’m sad for you too. I use it more and more.
      One thing I have found is that sometimes I need to press the Voice Control paddle again, else it will hang there waiting for a response. It’s quite obvious this is not a supported feature.

  8. Apple’s iOS 6 is also buggy, especially with behaviors regarding external media players, like SYNC. This is evidenced by a complete change in behavior with SYNC every time Apple releases a bug-fix patch to iOS 6. In this case, there is nothing for Ford to do until Apple can get iOS working right to its own spec.

  9. George, the lightning cable is up to standard USB spec. It will be compatible with any full spec USB port. It requires no special chip to be compatible. It does have a chip on the lightning end talking to the iPhone, this has nothing to do with comparability.

    I have zero problems with Sync and iOS 6 in my 2013 Ford Focus. It remembers and connects every time I get in the car. Without issue. But I do have a friend that has issues with sync in his f150. This is a ford issue and has nothing to do with Apple. There are some Android users reporting similar issues.

    IMO not that long ago cars that came with these types of systems were out of reach for most of us. This is new tech for Ford, I think were a couple generations away from it being what we want.

  10. I have a 2013 Lincoln MKX. I downloaded the most recent sync updates and right after got text message alerts, and the option to have them read to me. But now I can’t seem to get that to happen again. I made sure the settings-bluetooth-sync-notifications was set to “on” while connected.
    Also, I have disconnected and reconnected my iphone5. Still no text notifications from sync. Any ideas what to try next?

  11. for those whom it doesnt work, try mobile name instead of “dial name”
    however you have to be quick and it can be temperamental.
    however, with the latest IOS update, if you iphone is on charge you can initiate siri by saying “hey siri” followed by whatever you want Siri to do for you.
    you will have to turn the music down on your stereo though.
    “hey siri, where is my wife”
    “hey siri, what is the weather like today”
    “hey siri, call my wife mobile”

    etc