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Ford Remote Access smartphone app (NOT the Ford Pass app)

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I recently received an email about the Ford Remote Access smartphone app (NOT the Ford Pass app):

 

"We are writing to inform you that due to the upcoming discontinuation of the AT&T 3G network, all Ford and Lincoln Remote Access subscriptions will conclude on December 31, 2020.
You may or may not be aware, cellular network connectivity is required to operate your Ford or Lincoln Remote Access system, and unfortunately, AT&T is in the process of decommissioning the 3G network upon which the system relies.
If your current annual subscription period would have extended into 2021, please be aware it will cease to function on December 31, 2020. For customers who previously renewed on or after January 1, 2020, you will be able to request a prorated refund for the unused balance of your subscription cost. If you are currently enrolled in an automatic renewal program, or actively choose to renew during the balance of this year, we have discounted the renewal rate for the remaining calendar year.
We appreciate and value you as a customer. While we regret any inconvenience this announcement may cause, we suggest you please contact your Ford or Lincoln Dealer for possible alternatives."

 

- Has anyone found a reliable replacement that uses more current networks for communications (i.e., that won't be phased out in the short term)? If so, what did you choose and where did you have it installed (big-box store / local installer, etc)?   I have a 2013 Edge Limited (push-button start, Nav, etc.).
- If you have updated, what was involved and do all of the basic functions (remote start, lock / unlock and auto heat and cool / defrosters and seat warmers,  etc.) still work?

 

I'm hoping to find an upgrade path before the current app stops working, so thanks in advance for any responses.
Paul

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"we suggest you please contact your Ford or Lincoln Dealer for possible alternatives."

 

What did your dealer say? When analog cellular systems were going away, GM upgraded our Buick Rainier with new digital hardware. Maybe Ford will come up with a similar upgrade to your vehicle. I believe the newest models have 4G hardware. 

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Unfortunately, (and due to past experience) I don't have much faith that my local dealer will have any information beyond what is listed on the Ford parts site (which only displays fob style units). When the Remote Access unit first became available, my dealer and his parts people didn't know anything about it until I showed them what I had found online. Not positive, but I may have been one of the first people to order one in my area. I do recall the tech that installed and programmed it said it was the first he had done.
It would be different if you had the opportunity to speak directly with the techs that deal with these systems, but you don't. The parts guys just order and move product so I'm not going to waste their time.
For that reason I'm looking to see if someone has already put in a different system.
Thank you for responding.

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Ford has no solution that would fit your vehicle.  It was rumored they were coming out with a replacement for SmartLink (which they quickly discontinued) but no one that I know has seen a replacement.

 

You will have to go aftermarket (Viper, etc)

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Thanks for that information.
Following up on that, has anyone had an aftermarket system installed, and if so, were any of the parts already installed (antenna?, etc.) able to be re-used, or did your vehicle need to get pulled apart for all new items?
Thanks in advance.

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I thought this system worked with BOTH 3G AND 4G networks!!!! At least that's what they advertised. It's only the 3G networks that are being turned off.

 

Most everyone is currently on 4G anyways at this point (how many flip phones have you seen in use lately)?

 

Don't see what the problem is, as the modem in the car works with both networks. (?)

Edited by enigma-2

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56 minutes ago, enigma-2 said:

I thought this system worked with BOTH 3G AND 4G networks!!!! At least that's what they advertised. It's only the 3G networks that are being turned off.

 

Most everyone is currently on 4G anyways at this point (how many flip phones have you seen in use lately)?

 

Don't see what the problem is, as the modem in the car works with both networks. (?)

 

Are you referring to SYNC Connect?  If so SYNC Connect and Remote Access are two completely different systems.  Remote Access is defunct as of the end of the year due to the backbone 3G service being shut down.

 

To add the Remote Access RMU has a LISAU200 modem embedded in it and if you look up the specs it only supports up to 3G.  I suspect advertising of 3G or 4G area fell back on that 4G areas also provided 3G.

Edited by jmr061

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I reread the ford lit and I believe you're correct. It is a 3G modem, that works in 4G areas. (I read another page where it mislead to believe that it was compatible with both networks).

 

Ridiculous that they went with old technology (3G was supposed to be disconcontinued at the end of last year and it was known for shut down four years ago). 

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It works in 4G areas because the carriers still support 3G also. That is what is changing, support of 3G is being dropped to recover BW for newer services. If a car has 3G only hardware, it will not work when the carrier turns off their end. Time to upgrade the old flip phone! Ford could spec a 4G hardware upgrade for a fee if they wanted to. Or try to get you to buy a new vehicle, which route do you think they will take?

 

https://www.business.att.com/explore/make-the-switch.html?WT.srch=1&source=EBPS0000000PSM00P&wtExtndSource=IoT&wtpdsrchprg=AT%26T%20ABS&wtpdsrchgp=ABS_SEARCH&wtPaidSearchTerm=%2B3g %2Bcompany&wtpdsrchpcmt=%2B3g %2Bcompany&kid=kwd-394592255915&cid=1616913013&schParam=1622&LNS=PS_IT_IOT_UNB_1018&TFN=B2B&gclsrc=aw.ds&&gclid=Cj0KCQjwv7L6BRDxARIsAGj-34oX-XXQZaDT5Rjte0R56OeC0j5xdPAMMv01gv0fXqp_IXEH3yOmhQEaAnOTEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds

Edited by Snoking

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2 hours ago, enigma-2 said:

I reread the ford lit and I believe you're correct. It is a 3G modem, that works in 4G areas. (I read another page where it mislead to believe that it was compatible with both networks).

 

Ridiculous that they went with old technology (3G was supposed to be disconcontinued at the end of last year and it was known for shut down four years ago). 

 

I had remote access on my 13 Taurus early on it's life and have documentation published by Ford Sept 2013 showing remote access being available.

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Chuckle, that's what I was getting at. 3g and 4G on the same towers. That's the expensive part. Besides, they don't really own the towers nor the fiber optic cables anyway. So cutting out the 3G drops rental fees.

 

But, why in the hell did Ford spec 3G for this? It was already slated for termination when it was issued. Probably had a two to three year lead time, but it would have been simple to spec 4G into the equation in the design phase. After all, 4G was introduced in 2010, and when did the first smart access car appear? Years after that. 

 

Speaking of flip phones ... I actually have a friend, who's cheaper then me, (ahem) and still uses a 1978 Simplicity lawn tractor (two of them actually, one for parts) who still uses a Motorola flip phone.

Says he likes the simplicity (sic) of just making phone calls. 

 

Anyway, I think their missing a cash cow by not offering an upgrade. Dealer could change it out in 1 hour (probably less).

 

Out of curiosity I checked with Verizon and they are still offering 3G. Was slated to turn off last December, thought it had, but they extended to this December. (Probably to match the other carriers). 

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15 hours ago, enigma-2 said:

I reread the ford lit and I believe you're correct. It is a 3G modem, that works in 4G areas. (I read another page where it mislead to believe that it was compatible with both networks).

 

Ridiculous that they went with old technology (3G was supposed to be disconcontinued at the end of last year and it was known for shut down four years ago). 

 

AT&T's announcement of 3G shutdown was recent. I don't believe any other place outside of the US is shutting down 3G this early. I don't think there was any indication on the short longevity of 3G networks in the US when Ford up with its tech. But I do agree they should come up with replacement hardware for customers who want to continue.

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Guest Nicole2013

We purchased this remote start app back in 2014 and 3G wasn't planned for replacement at that time as far as I am aware. I am waiting to hear back from the Ford team about a replacement option.

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Guest F150 Owner

I will be looking to file a class action lawsuit for this.  

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Guest Jeff

Bought my 16 edge in 17 and was sold this remote start system as being the best ever.  3 short years later and it’s gone

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Guest Taurus SHO

Any info on a lawsuit for this. I spent a lot of money to have this installed. And they wont be getting away with this

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Technology evolves and changes.  There will be no winning lawsuit.

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Guest 2018 SHO

I had this installed on my 2018 when I bought it, so it’s still covered under warranty. However Ford Corporate says it is a dealer issues and the dealer says it’s a Ford issue. 

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