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Beware FMT Customer Service Information - USB Wireless support


Sturm22

New Member
Joined
March 17, 2011
Messages
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City, State
Carmel by the Sea, Peoples Republic of California
Year, Model & Trim Level
2011 Limited
I am writing this to let people know to be wary about the information being provided to us from the Ford Sync customer service people. I am now pretty much sure that my grandmother knows more about networking and wireless than anyone I have spoken to at the Ford Sync support line.

My story:

I picked up my 2011 Explorer Limited last week. I was particularly excited about the FMT wireless capability due to the fact that I currently use a Cradlepoint Wireless router with a Verizon USB Broadband modem in my Escalade. It involves me installing and removing the router each time I get in the vehicle so I was very interested in the USB modem support for the 2011 Ex.

I picked mine up on last Tuesday and by the evening had already determined that my working Verizon USB760 Modem was not going to work in the EX. The Ford software did not like the modem even being plugged into the USB adapter.

I spoke the following Wednesday morning with the Ford Sync customer service and after a lot of work got them to tell me that the USB feature only works with 2 USB Modems. I asked for a list of the modems and was told one was the Sierra Wireless USB 598.

The first line telephone support people do not sound like they are at all familiar with wireless or even computers in general and have to put you on hold for 3 minute stretches while they go talk to someone who knows. Each question and exchange of information involved a torturous 3 minute turn around to get the simplest information.

I got off the phone with Ford and located and paid expedite freight for the Sierra Wireless USB 598. It arrived yesterday and I dashed down to Verizon to have it activated to replace my older USB760. I came home tried it in my laptop to insure that the modem was working and then plugged it into the EX USB port. At first it appeared to be happy as it said "USB Device connected" The blue network sync was on on the modem. I tested to see if there was any wireless signal present but no joy. The menu for the USB setup was also unresponsive. In short it doesn't work.

I called the Ford Mysync suport again and went througt the thing about USB Modems and again had to wait for 3 to 5 minutes for each question/comment. After explaining that I had spent the last week securing the USB modem that was recommended by them the customer service rep disappeared for 5 minutes this time and returned with this answer:

The problem is that while the USB 598 had been tested on the Ford Explorer it had only been tested on the Sprint network and not on Verizon ! They could not help me.

As I had about 25-30 hours and over 200 USD into the project at this point you can imagine how I took this information.

I told them that I would run down and cancel my Verizon account and go sign up with Sprint. Her rather blase response was "OK, well give us a call back when you have done that " and I hope that I have answered all your questions please take the brief phone survey.

Other than the shills on this forum has anyone actually gotten the USB Hotspot to work on the 2011 Explorer ? I would love to know before I run down to Sprint.

Actually I am pretty sure that if I were to switch to Sprint and the USB port does not work, the anwer would be. "What color is the USB modem ?" My anwer = Black . Their response would be "Ah well there's the problem, it only works with the red one ".....;)
 




sticker500

Member
Joined
March 12, 2011
Messages
86
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0
City, State
Prattville, AL
Year, Model & Trim Level
Sold 2011 Limited
I am writing this to let people know to be wary about the information being provided to us from the Ford Sync customer service people. I am now pretty much sure that my grandmother knows more about networking and wireless than anyone I have spoken to at the Ford Sync support line.

My story:

I picked up my 2011 Explorer Limited last week. I was particularly excited about the FMT wireless capability due to the fact that I currently use a Cradlepoint Wireless router with a Verizon USB Broadband modem in my Escalade. It involves me installing and removing the router each time I get in the vehicle so I was very interested in the USB modem support for the 2011 Ex.

I picked mine up on last Tuesday and by the evening had already determined that my working Verizon USB760 Modem was not going to work in the EX. The Ford software did not like the modem even being plugged into the USB adapter.

I spoke the following Wednesday morning with the Ford Sync customer service and after a lot of work got them to tell me that the USB feature only works with 2 USB Modems. I asked for a list of the modems and was told one was the Sierra Wireless USB 598.

The first line telephone support people do not sound like they are at all familiar with wireless or even computers in general and have to put you on hold for 3 minute stretches while they go talk to someone who knows. Each question and exchange of information involved a torturous 3 minute turn around to get the simplest information.

I got off the phone with Ford and located and paid expedite freight for the Sierra Wireless USB 598. It arrived yesterday and I dashed down to Verizon to have it activated to replace my older USB760. I came home tried it in my laptop to insure that the modem was working and then plugged it into the EX USB port. At first it appeared to be happy as it said "USB Device connected" The blue network sync was on on the modem. I tested to see if there was any wireless signal present but no joy. The menu for the USB setup was also unresponsive. In short it doesn't work.

I called the Ford Mysync suport again and went througt the thing about USB Modems and again had to wait for 3 to 5 minutes for each question/comment. After explaining that I had spent the last week securing the USB modem that was recommended by them the customer service rep disappeared for 5 minutes this time and returned with this answer:

The problem is that while the USB 598 had been tested on the Ford Explorer it had only been tested on the Sprint network and not on Verizon ! They could not help me.

As I had about 25-30 hours and over 200 USD into the project at this point you can imagine how I took this information.

I told them that I would run down and cancel my Verizon account and go sign up with Sprint. Her rather blase response was "OK, well give us a call back when you have done that " and I hope that I have answered all your questions please take the brief phone survey.

Other than the shills on this forum has anyone actually gotten the USB Hotspot to work on the 2011 Explorer ? I would love to know before I run down to Sprint.

Actually I am pretty sure that if I were to switch to Sprint and the USB port does not work, the anwer would be. "What color is the USB modem ?" My anwer = Black . Their response would be "Ah well there's the problem, it only works with the red one ".....;)

Why not just use a Verizon MiFi? Has standalone battery, can support 5 users, can be charged from vehicle and also could be used with your Cradlepoint. Also very small footprint.

Why are people looking to this as a feature in the Explorer? I know it is advertised but if you need a USB Modem anyway...

Don't take my comments the wrong way, I am really trying to understand.
 




paulfrank285

Active Member
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March 5, 2011
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City, State
Union, NJ
Year, Model & Trim Level
2011 EXP XLT
@sturm22...i understand your concerns but 1). how can you compare your granddmother to Ford's customer service rep? :D 2). do you really expect any technical support from any customer service rep? they just read whatever manuals, lists they have... 3). if you go to Sierra wireless website, look up the USB 598, at the bottom it tells you where to buy it but they listed Sprint but not Verizon! so i would assume it won't be compatible with Verizon network (even it's a CDMA device).
 








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