Your Ford Could Be Your Very Own Personal Assistant

Every wish your Ford could tell how you were feeling and find ways to make your commute more enjoyable without you saying a word? At Planet Ford in Spring, we thought it sounded like a great idea too.

With nearly all new cars expected to offer voice recognition by 2022, future systems may evolve to interpret tone of voice, facial expressions. Ford’s in-car connectivity system SYNC 3 already enables voice control, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and will soon enable drivers to use Amazon’s virtual assistant Alexa. Ford with RWTH Aachen University is researching using multiple microphones to improve speech processing and reduce the effect of external noise and potential disruptions.

It all sounds great, right? After all, many of us are already used to cars that understand what we say. Experts predict that in future they may also know how we feel – sometimes without us having to say a word.

Nearly 90 percent of all new cars are expected to offer voice recognition capability by 2022. * The next step for the cars of tomorrow could be to pick up on tiny changes in our facial expression as well as modulations and inflections in our speaking voice, easing the driving experience for consumers.

Advanced systems – equipped with sophisticated microphones and in-car cameras – could learn which songs we like to hear when we are stressed and those occasions we prefer to simply enjoy silence. Interior lighting could also complement our mood.

“We’re well on the road to developing the empathetic car which might tell you a joke to cheer you up, offer advice when you need it, remind you of birthdays and keep you alert on a long drive,” said Fatima Vital, senior director, Marketing Automotive, Nuance Communications, which helped Ford develop voice recognition of the SYNC in-car connectivity system.

Cloud-based voice control is anticipated to be available on 75 per cent of new cars by 2022, * and it is predicted future systems would evolve into personal assistants that shuffle appointments and order takeaways when drivers are held up in traffic jams.

Movie fans will recall in the film “Her,” Scarlett Johansson’s character Samantha catered to Theodore Twombly’s every command, as a voice recognition system, which with uncanny accuracy, learned his mood, needs and wants – just from the sound of his voice. Someday soon, your car could do something similar.

This summer, Ford’s in-car connectivity system SYNC 3 will enable drivers to connect to Amazon’s virtual assistant Alexa and offers 23 different languages and many local accents. By accessing cloud-based resources, cars of the future could enable even more drivers to speak their native language, good news for those celebrating International Mother Language Day.

“Voice commands like ‘I’m hungry’ to find a restaurant and ‘I need coffee’ have already brought SYNC 3 into personal assistant territory,” said Mareike Sauer, voice control engineer, Connectivity Application Team, Ford of Europe. “For the next step, drivers will not only be able to use their native tongue, spoken in their own accent, but also use their own wording, for more natural speech.”

Apple CarPlay™ provides a simplified way to use the iPhone interface on a car’s touch screen, giving users access to Siri Eyes-Free voice controls, as well as Apple Maps, Apple Music, Phone, Messages, and a variety of third party apps. Android Auto™ delivers Google Maps and music to a car’s screen while enabling voice controls for phone calls and messaging. *

A research project Ford is currently running with RWTH Aachen University includes using multiple microphones to improve speech processing and reduce the effect of external noise and potential disruptions. Nuance says that within the next two years, voice control systems could prompt us with: “Would you like to order flowers for your mum for Mothers’ Day?” “Shall I choose a less congested but slower route home?” and “You’re running low on your favourite chocolate and your favourite store has some in stock. Want to stop by and pick some up?”

Future gesture and eye control would enable drivers to answer calls by nodding their head, adjust the volume with short twisting motions, and set the navigation with a quick glance at their destination on a map.

So is there a danger that, as in the movie “Her,” we might fall for our advanced voice recognition systems?

“Lots of people already love their cars, but with new in-car systems that learn and adapt, we can expect some seriously strong relationships to form,” said Dominic Watt, senior lecturer, Department of Language and Linguistic Science, University of York. “The car will soon be our assistant, travel companion and sympathetic ear, and you’ll be able to discuss everything and ask anything, to the point many of us might forget we’re even talking to a machine.”

Ready to shop for your future Ford today, visit Planet Ford in Spring (serving The Woodlands, Houston, Aldine, Cypress, Conroe) on I-45 at Loretta or visit www.PlanetFord45.com!

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* http://www.autonews.com/article/20170122/OEM06/301239846/alexa-do-i-need-a-virtual-assistant-in-the-car

** SYNC languages include Arabic, Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English (Australian), English (UK), English (US), French, French (Canada), German, Italian, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Spanish, Spanish (Mexico), Swedish, Taiwanese, Turkish, Coming later this year are English (India), Finnish and Thai.

Apple, Apple CarPlay, iPhone, Apple Maps, and Siri are trademarks of Apple Inc. Android Auto, Google, Google Play and other marks are trademarks of Google Inc.

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Ford Fusion Takes MotorWeek Top Family Sedan Honor

At Planet Ford in Spring (on I-45) the Ford Fusion is extremely popular, especially for busy, Houston families on the go. so it comes as no surprise that it has garnered one of MotorWeek’s top honors.  The 2017 Ford Fusion was recognized as the 2017 Drivers’ Choice Award for Best Family Sedan.

People who buy it love the most technology-packed Fusion ever.  It is the first Ford vehicle in North America to offer adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go functionality and Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection. These features are among 20 driver-assist technologies available across the Fusion lineup, including Fusion Hybrid, Fusion Energi and Fusion Sport models.

The sporty sedan features a 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost® engine, along with Intelligent All-Wheel Drive and continuously controlled damping for an even more fun-to-drive experience.

Every year, MotorWeek assesses new cars, trucks and SUVs, judging vehicles from a buyer’s point of view and taking into account such factors as trends, innovation, value and reliability.

When you’re ready to take the Ford Fusion for a spin, visit Planet Ford in Spring (serving greater Houston, The Woodlands, Aldine, Cypress, Conroe) on I-45 at Louetta or log on to www.PlanetFord45.com.

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2017 Ford Super Duty Earns Top Overall Crash Test Ratings

At Randall Reed’s Planet Ford in Spring on I-45 (serving great Houston, The Woodlands, Aldine, Cypress, Conroe), you and your family’s safety is paramount when selecting a vehicle. That’s Ford’s top concern too as they build out their tough, tech-packed and stylish vehicles.

It’s no surprise that Ford continues to show why they have earned to right to say they are “Built Ford Tough” as they continue to receive high praise, awards and ratings. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has awarded the 2017 Ford F-250 Super Duty Crew Cab 4×2 with a five-star overall vehicle score in its New Car Assessment Program – the highest possible rating. That makes this all-new truck the safest Super Duty ever!

Some of safety highlights:

  • Frontal driver rating improves to five stars; side crash ratings for front and rear remain five stars
  • Safety starts with Super Duty’s backbone – a fully boxed frame that is 95 percent high-strength steel; and its segment-exclusive high-strength, military-grade, aluminum-alloy body

Super Duty’s improved performance is enabled by weight savings of up to 350 pounds through the use of high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy in the body and box. This leads to more local frame stiffness at strategic locations to deliver considerable improvement in occupant protection. The weight savings is then reinvested into an all-new fully boxed frame that is more than 95 percent high-strength steel and up to 24 times stiffer than the previous frame.

But Ford didn’t stop with the truck’s body and frame – Super Duty sets a new level of technology availability for the segment. Options such as 360-degree camera system, adaptive cruise control with collision mitigation, lane-keeping alert and inflatable seatbelts help the driver to have more confidence and control while towing and hauling heavy loads from job site to job site.

When you’re ready for your new Ford truck, shop our selection at www.PlanetFord45.com or take the short drive on I-45 to the Planet Ford sign… you’re sign for great savings and award-winning service!

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Houston Texan Player Presents Planet Ford’s Vehicle for a Vet

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 2.36.35 PMFord’tastic News!  The Planet Ford in Spring family (serving the Houston area) is very excited to announce that Vincent Wilfork, of the Houston Texans, will present a deserving veteran with our Planet Ford F-150 truck.   The announcement will take place this coming Saturday, July 23rd, during the Spring Texas Music Fest at Bareback Bar and Ice House.

James Wilfork (image via James Wilfork Foundation Twitter)

James Wilfork (image via Wilfork Foundation Twitter)

Mr. Wilfork, one of the premier defensive tackles, was named to both the Pro Bowl and the All-Pro team in 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012.

He has a great passion for helping others and has the Vincent Wilfork Foundation. the organization’s purpose is to be source of support for any and all non-profit organizations, including supporting our military and veterans.

Planet Ford and the Reed family share the  same ideals and are pleased to have Mr. Wilfork at Spring Texas Music Fest.  “The Reed and Planet Ford families are so happy to be able to help our veterans in need,” said Randall Reed, owner of Planet Ford and World Class Automotive Group. “We are thrilled that Mr. Wilfork is kind enough to serve as our special announcer and support this wonderful event.”

Planet Ford’s Spring Texas Music Fest Ford F-150 will be awarded at the Barback Bar & Icehouse located at 19940 Kuyendahl in Spring, TX. The festival will feature an incredible line up including: Jason Cassidy, Charlie Robison, Scooter Brown Band, Rick Trevino, Jody Booth, Jon Wolfe, Josh Ward, Jerrett Zoch & OSR, and Jackson Taylor and the Sinners.

The finalists, who will be announced at the event, were selected from the many nominations sent in by community members who know a wounded warrior in need of a truck. “There was such an outpouring,” Mr. Reed said. “Reading all of the essays and looking through the pictures, it was easy to see all of the heroes on our community and very hard for the committee to choose.”

The Spring Music Fest helps to restore and renew hope for our wounded service members and their families through financial support. Overseas deployments and combat action can take a serious toll on everyone involved, from the men and women on the front lines to the friends and families who wait patiently for their loved ones to return home.

To learn more or purchase tickets to the charitable Spring Texas Music Fest, visit OuthouseTickets.com. For information about Planet Ford in Spring or Planet Ford in Humble, go to www.PlanetFord.com.

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Final Days to Register Vet to Win Planet Ford Vehicle

vehicles for vets houston fordDon’t let time run out on your chance to enter a veteran in need of a vehicle. this is the final week to nominate a wonder warrior for a Ford truck from Randall Reed’s Planet Ford in Spring, Texas (on I-45).  The Reed family and Planet Ford will soon be giving away this awesome price at the upcoming Spring Texas Music Fest.

The Reeds and Planet Ford believe in giving back to those who serve our communities and especially those who serve our country. In honor of our brave men and women, the Planet Ford locations present the Spring Music Festival Vehicles for Vets!

“The Planet Ford families are seeking nominations for wounded warriors in need of and deserve to win a Ford F-150 truck,” said Randall Reed, owner of Planet Ford and World Class Automotive Group. “We want to say thank you and recognize our military heroes for all they have done for our country. Proving a vehicle is the least we can do.”

The Spring Texas Music Fest Ford F-150 will be given away during the event on July 23rd at the Barback Bar & Icehouse located at 19940 Kuyendahl in Spring, TX. The festival will feature an incredible line up including: Jason Cassidy, Charlie Robison, Scooter Brown Band, Rick Trevino, Jody Booth, Jon Wolfe, Josh Ward, Jerrett Zoch & OSR, and Jackson Taylor and the Sinners.

The Spring Music Fest helps to restore and renew hope for our wounded service members and their families through financial support. Overseas deployments and combat action can take a serious toll on everyone involved, from the men and women on the front lines to the friends and families who wait patiently for their loved ones to return home.

For those who know a wounded veteran that deserves a vehicle, they are invited to nominate their military hero via the Planet Ford Vehicles for Vet essay contest online.

How It Works:

  1. Fill out the online form at planetford.com/vehiclesforvets (See site for rules.)
  2. Submit a 1,500 word essay about a current or veteran of any branch of the military
  3. Share why that individual deserves a Ford truck
  4. Submit a photo of the individual
  5. Finalist will be contacted

To purchase tickets to the charitable Spring Texas Music Fest, log on to OuthouseTickets.com. For information about Planet Ford in Spring or Planet Ford in Humble, go to www.PlanetFord.com.

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Planet Ford Donates Vehicle for a Veteran

vehicles for vets houston fordRandall Reed’s Planet Ford in Spring, Texas (on I-45) believe in giving back to those who serve our communities and our country. In honor of our brave men and women, the Planet Ford locations present the Spring Music Festival Vehicles for Vets!

“The Reed and Planet Ford families are seeking nominations for wounded warriors in need of and deserve to win a Ford F-150 truck,” said Randall Reed, owner of Planet Ford and World Class Automotive Group. “We want to say thank you and recognize our military heroes for all they have done for our country. Proving a vehicle is the least we can do.”

The Spring Texas Music Fest Ford F-150 will be given away during the event on July 23rd at the Barback Bar & Icehouse located at 19940 Kuyendahl in Spring, TX. The festival will feature an incredible line up including: Jason Cassidy, Charlie Robison, Scooter Brown Band, Rick Trevino, Jody Booth, Jon Wolfe, Josh Ward, Jerrett Zoch & OSR, and Jackson Taylor and the Sinners.

The Spring Music Fest helps to restore and renew hope for our wounded service members and their families through financial support. Overseas deployments and combat action can take a serious toll on everyone involved, from the men and women on the front lines to the friends and families who wait patiently for their loved ones to return home.

For those who know a wounded veteran that deserves a vehicle, they are invited to nominate their military hero via the Planet Ford Vehicles for Vet essay contest online.

How It Works:

  1. Fill out the online form at planetford.com/vehiclesforvets (See site for rules.)
  2. Submit a 1,500 word essay about a current or veteran of any branch of the military
  3. Share why that individual deserves a Ford truck
  4. Submit a photo of the individual
  5. Finalist will be contacted

To purchase tickets to the charitable Spring Texas Music Fest, log on to OuthouseTickets.com. For information about Planet Ford in Spring or Planet Ford in Humble, go to www.PlanetFord.com.

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Planet Partners with Ford to Accelerate Education in Houston Area

Randall Reed’s Planet Ford in Spring, Texas is excited to be part of a unique collaboration with Ford Motor Company Fund. In December, the American automaker announced the Ford Driving Dreams education initiative with a donation of 10,000 new books and $100,000 in scholarships available to high school seniors in Greater Houston.

Alexa Horak, Planet Ford in Spring Community Relations Director, represents Houston-area dealer and Ford at Beneke Elementary School where books were donated for students to aid in accelerating education!

Alexa Horak, Planet Ford in Spring Community Relations Director, represents Houston-area dealer and Ford at Beneke Elementary School where books were donated for students to aid in accelerating education!

May 25th, Planet kicked off their portion of the Ford Driving Dreams Tour with its first school donation to Beneke Elementary School.  The Houston area school has students from kindergarten to 4th grade.

Planet Ford presented new books in conjunction with the Ford Motor Company Fund.  To mark the special occasion, Planet provided sweet treats and had a Cookie Celebration after the student’s award celebration. “The students, parents, and faculty were overwhelmed by the donation,” said Shawn Burns, General Manager and Operating Partner of Planet Ford. “We are very excited to help bring these new books to the school’s library for the all the enthusiastic readers.”

The Driving Dreams Tour is part of Ford’s overall education efforts in the state of Texas and focuses on promoting reading at an early age. According to the American Educational Research Association, the ability to read by the third grade determines a child’s future. Research shows that in some of the lowest-income communities, there’s only one book per 300 children. The 10,000 new books will be distributed by the end of the school year to children attending nearly 100 schools and programs that serve low-income communities in Greater Houston.

“Having access to books is one of the biggest predictors of a child’s academic success,” said Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO of First Book. “And together with Ford we’re helping level the playing field for kids who too often go without these and other critical educational resources. We’re proud to join Ford and its Houston dealers to provide new books to kids in Houston and look forward to our continued work to improve lives in the communities across the country.” For more information, visit www.forddrivingdreams.com.

About Planet Ford

Planet Ford is located at 20403 I-45, Spring, Texas 77388. Planet sells new Fords, Certified Pre-Owned Fords, Pre-Owned Vehicles and offers onsite Parts, Service and Collision Departments. The location also offers a 28-bay Service Department. Planet Ford is an award-winning dealership known for their quality service, selection and dedication to customer satisfaction. Planet is a strong proponent of community. They sponsor many local schools, charities and non-profit organizations.

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Planet Ford Lends Hand for Disaster Relief

P45 Disaster Relief image012Spring weather in Texas can be dangerous. The recent weather has impacted many in our community leaving them with damaged homes and vehicles.

In May, Planet Ford in Spring, Texas teamed up with more than 300 community members to volunteer with the Disaster Relief Unit organized by Samaritan’s Purse and The Woodlands Church.

Together, we provided free demolition and cleanup services to homeowners impacted by the flooding in our area who have little or no insurance. It was hard work for our team and rewarding to be able to pitch in and help those recovering after the wave of terrible storms.

If you’re in need of automotive assistance, contact Planet Ford in Spring to find out how we can help with auto repair and new vehicles. www.PlanetFord45.com

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Randall Reed, Planet Ford Present College Scholarships

Shawn Burns, GM/OP, presenting Houston-area graduating seniors with Planet Ford Scholarships.

Shawn Burns, GM/OP, presenting Houston-area graduating seniors with Planet Ford Scholarships.

Randall Reed and Planet Ford in Spring, the No. 1 Ford Dealer in the Houston area for 15 years, presented five graduating high school seniors with the Planet Ford Scholarship.

The awards, in the amount of $2,500, are part of the ongoing outreach by the Reed family and Planet Ford to help fuel the dreams of the young people in the Spring, Texas and surrounding communities.

Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 10.02.15 AMScreen Shot 2016-05-16 at 10.03.01 AM

 

 

 

 

This year’s Planet Ford Scholarship winners include:Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 10.03.28 AM

  • Julia Meyer of Conroe High School. Attending Texas A & M University for Biomedical Sciences.
  • Katie James of Oak Ridge High School. Attending Texas A & M University for English.
  • Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 10.02.44 AMHailey Rogers of The Woodlands College Park High School. Attending Georgia Institute of Technology for Chemical Engineering.
  • Matthew McClellan of The Woodlands High School. Attending the University of Texas at Austin for Chemical Engineering.Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 10.03.17 AM
  • Olivia Wren of Caney Creek High School. Attending the University of Houston for Business.

The Planet Ford Scholarship awards were open to graduating high school seniors with a cumulative GPA of 3.75 or higher. One student applicant from each participating school was eligible to win a $2,500 award. The winners were selected by a Planet Ford panel based on a students grades, school and community involvement and goals for the future.

“There were so many amazing candidates this year,” said Shawn Burns, General Manager/Operating Partner of Planet Ford in Spring, Texas. “It was a real challenge for our team to narrow it down to a handful of winners, which also speaks to how special those selected truly are.”

Randall Reed, owner of Planet Ford and World Class Auto Group agreed. “This is a group of extraordinary young people. We are so happy to help encourage and support their future endeavors. They are going to go far in life,” he said.

Randall Reed’s Planet Ford in Spring is located at 20403 I-45 in Spring, Texas. The dealership has earned of being the No. 1 Ford dealer in the area for 15 Years*. Planet Ford offers new Fords and quality pre-owned vehicles. In addition, Planet Ford also provides a full Service, Parts and Collision Department. For more information, visit www.PlanetFord45.com.

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Planet Presents Spring ISD Teachers of Year with New Ford, Dream Cruise

Shawn Burn, Planet Ford GM/OP, presents Spring ISD Teacher of the Year with keys to a new Ford donated by Randall Reed and Planet Ford

Shawn Burn, Planet Ford GM/OP, presents Spring ISD Teacher of the Year with keys to a new Ford donated by Randall Reed and Planet Ford

On May 3rd, Teacher Appreciation Day,  Planet Ford had the honor or surprising two of Spring Independent School District educators with a brand new Ford vehicle and a Caribbean vacation during the district’s Employee Recognition Banquet. The awards were courtesy of Randall Reed and Planet Ford on I-45 in Spring, Texas (serving The Woodlands, Aldin, Cypress, Conroe, greater Houston area).

Shawn Burns, General Manager and Operating Partner of Planet Ford had the thrilling task of announcing that Chase Jones, of Twin Creeks Middle School, was the Secondary Teacher of the Year and winner of a brand-new Ford. “The look on his face when we announced his name was priceless,” said Mr. Burns. “We really enjoy being able to do this for our teachers and school district each year in a celebration of all they do for our kids and community each and every day.”

Mr. Burns, GM/OP, presents Francis Bugarin, Elementary Teacher of the Year, with a dream cruise trip for two courtesy of Randall Reed and Planet Ford

Mr. Burns, GM/OP, presents Francis Bugarin, Elementary Teacher of the Year, with a dream cruise trip for two courtesy of Randall Reed and Planet Ford

Mr. Burns also surprised Francis Bugarin, of McNabb Elementary, with an all-inclusive Carnival Cruise to the Caribbean for two, also provided by the Reed Family and Planet Ford. Mr. Bugarin was awarded Spring ISD’s Elementary Teacher of the Year award.

“All of our amazing teachers are at the heart of this community,” said Randall Reed, owner of World Class Automotive Group and Planet Ford. “Our educators not only teach, they mold lives of our children and have a profound impact on everyone’s future. With all they do, we’re thrilled to be able to recognize their outstanding efforts with the gift of a new Ford and dream getaway.”

The Spring ISD Employee Recognition Banquet was held May 3, 2016, at the Hilton North Houston at 12400 Greenspoint Drive in Houston, Texas. Spring ISD’s Teacher of the Year program recognizes outstanding educators for their passion and commitment to excellence in education. Each Spring ISD school selects their campus Teacher of the Year, who are invited to submit written materials to be considered as a finalist for the district’s Teacher of the Year. A selection committee chooses an Elementary and a Secondary Teacher of the Year to represent the district.

To learn more about Planet Ford in Spring, visit www.planetford45.com.

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