Audible SMS Makes Texting While Driving a Safe Possibility

We all know how difficult it is to text while driving. Speaking from experience, it's virtually impossible -- and in some parts of South Florida, even illegal. AT&T adds a little label to the front of new phones suggesting not to do it, and we've all heard of the friend who knew someone who crashed by trying to multitask. We get the point. But now a new technology has been created to make texting and driving a cinch, and you'll be able to do it effortlessly by 2011.

This is especially good news for BlackBerry users, who will be the first to benefit from these advances. BlackBerry is working with Ford to make audible text messaging via SYNC a reality. RIM has agreed to implement the Bluetooth-standard MAP on new BlackBerrys moving forward -- that's Message Access Profile in laymen's terms. But what does that mean exactly?

You'll be able to create enhanced connections between the SYNC system and your smartphone, and it will read aloud incoming text messages. The text message feature will only read aloud incoming text messages for now, with a "text-to-voice" function. There will even be an option for drivers to block incoming calls and texts with a Do Not Disturb button -- but who really wants to do that?

Of course, there's always a catch. All of this will be accessible only for those who own a new Ford that has the MyFord Touch system. Not to be confused with the iPod Touch, it incorporates navigation, climate control, and audio options and connects your phone with the Internet. You'll be able to make your car into a Wi-Fi hotspot, listen to HD radio with iTunes tagging support, and, best of all, it's all interconnected by two 4.2 LCD screens and an eight-inch touch-screen LCD in the center console.

All of this will be primarily featured in the 2011 Ford Edge and will be available on most Fords in 2012. Here's hoping other carmakers take note and make this a mainstream necessity.

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