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Editing your iPhone or smartphone contacts can help you improve access with the Ford Sync system.

When it comes to most smartphones, the critical first step is entering the contact data correctly.

If you open a new contact file, put the First Name of your contact in the “First Name” box. And then put the contact’s Last Name in the “Last Name” box. Sound simple enough, but here’s the deal… if you put the name John Smith entirely on the “First Name” line and then, if your phone and your Ford Sync system is set up to search by last name, then guess what? That’s right, you can say, “Call John Smith,” and the Ford Sync system cannot find anything in your phone book. So, take the time to edit your contacts by name and how they are entered.

When it comes to the iPhone 5, be sure to go to your Settings icon. Scroll down to the “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” box and give it a tap. Then scroll down to the “Contacts” section. Take notice of your “Sort Order”, you may want to set it on “Last, First” and then look at your “Display Order” and you might want to make that “First, Last.” Otherwise, you might be pushing the Voice button and say “Call John Smith” and the Sync system might say “No such contact found.” But it might if you said, “Call Smith, John.” I don’t know about you, but that would drive me crazy to say Last Name first and then First name last.

Then, take notice of what kind of phone number you are entering on the contact… place their work number in the “Work” number box, and the cell number on the “Mobile” number box. Then, the proper way to set up the call is to tall Sync, “Call John Smith at Work.” Why? If you don’t, and just say, “Call John Smith,” then the system will come back and state “Multiple contacts found, say 1 for Work and 2 for Mobile.” Once again, take some time to edit your phone book to make it so you can make the call without a lot of prompting from Sync.

And, did you know that when you initially Pair your Phone, and give the system permission to download your phonebook contacts, what the system does is Index (review) your contacts. If you make additions or corrections to your phonebook while in your vehicle, the Sync system won’t be able to “see” the updates until you turn off the vehicle, completely power down your Sync system, and then restart (or reboot) your Sync system. Then it will re-index your contacts and “see” the updates.

For those with the MyFord Touch system, you may want to touch the Phone corner, tap the Settings tab, go to the Manage Phonebook tab, and then tap Re-download Phonebook.

Watch out when it comes to using contacts that are entered in all capital letters. The Sync system has to review your contacts by the text you have entered into the contact information line. “John” is reviewed by the system and then it can listen and say “John.” If a contact is entered as “JOHN” then the system can only “find” the name if you say, “Call J-O-H-N.” So, avoid entering your contact names in all capital letters.

It makes sense to take the time to edit your frequently called contacts and make the information so the Sync system can easily understand it.