Ford is working with cloud-based software technology leader Pivotal to build a software platform supporting FordPass® that will enable the company to rapidly innovate and iterate on new applications and mobility solutions for consumers.
FordPass – a free digital, physical and personal platform – features four benefits for members: Marketplace includes mobility services such as parking and sharing; FordGuides help consumers move more efficiently; Appreciation, where members are recognized for their loyalty; and FordHubs, where consumers can experience Ford’s latest innovations.
FordPass also will allow Ford owners with SYNC® Connect technology to remotely start, lock and unlock, and locate their vehicle – capabilities that will play a key role in future mobility services.
“With FordPass, we are making it easier for consumers, whether they own a Ford vehicle or not, to get where they need to go,” said Elena Ford, vice president, Global Dealer and Consumer Experience. “Working with Pivotal, Ford will be able to rapidly add new features and adapt mobility solutions and services that benefit FordPass members in the ways that fit them best.”
By collaborating with Pivotal, Ford gains a wealth of cutting-edge modern software development methodologies, next-generation cloud platform and analytics capabilities and knowledge. At the pace of a startup, Pivotal and Ford IT engineers are working side-by-side to continuously innovate in developing and designing new consumer experiences for FordPass members.
“More than 100 years ago, Ford transformed how the world moved. Now, Ford is using Pivotal's cloud platform and technologies to do it again by bringing the Silicon Valley state of mind to the company,” said Pivotal CEO Rob Mee. “By collaborating with Pivotal on FordPass, Ford is proving they can innovate and move as quickly as any venture-backed startup.”
FordPass launches in April; membership is free for Ford vehicle owners and non-owners alike by registering online.
From experimentation to implementation
In the future, customers will be able to access both car-sharing and ride-sharing services via FordPass. Experimental work with Pivotal is now under way as teams are building the foundation for future applications and consumer experiences.
One of the first programs to result from the work is a Dynamic Shuttle service Ford is piloting for employees on its Dearborn, Michigan, campus. Dynamic Shuttle features smart ride-hailing technology with premium customized shuttles – applying insights from earlier experiments and research with urban commuters globally. The convenience of the service will allow employees to summon point-to-point rides on-demand.
With the pilot, once a mobile-based ride request is made, the Ford-developed software – including the algorithm that drives the platform’s technical capabilities – immediately determines the shuttle best suited to address the request without extending the travel time of riders already aboard. The rider is then sent an offer detailing proposed pick-up time and maximum duration of the trip. If the rider accepts the offer, the request is dispatched to the shuttle driver’s navigation interface, along with the most efficient route to complete the requests of all riders in the timeliest manner.