Ford announced Monday at the Mobile World Congress, the world's largest gathering for the mobile industry, in Barcelona, Spain, its new FordPass Connect built-in modem and Wi-Fi hotspot capability. Developed in partnership with Vodafone, families and children can watch movies, listen to their favorite music or even do their school homework while traveling thanks to the ability to surf the internet with improved 4G connectivity. 

The system incorporates a live traffic feature which will offer drivers real-time updates and re-route them away from congestion. 

Incorporating an external aerial, the Wi-Fi hotspot enables up to 10 devices to connect to the network at once. FordPass Connect also has other abilities. The app will enable drivers operate door locks remotely from almost anywhere in the world. They can check information on fuel and oil levels, tire pressure, battery life, the odometer, and find the vehicle's location on a map. FordPass will even notify the owner when the alarm is activated!

Connectivity is more important than ever. In the UK for example, 33% of children under five now have their own tablet. From 2014 to 2015, the number of Europeans paying for streamed TV and film content increased by 400 percent while streaming music is expected to surpass music downloads by next year.

"The future of mobility is enabled by connectivity, connectivity between you and the vehicle, between your smartphone and vehicle, and between the vehicle and its surroundings," said Don Butler, executive director, Ford Connected Vehicle and Services. "With FordPass Connect, our SYNC platform is transitioning from being device-centric to become cloud-connected. FordPass Connect with Wi-Fi powered by Vodafone lets kids watch movies, listen to music or even do homework while traveling; and people working from the road can easily access corporate resources from wherever they are."

Ford and Vodafone jointly stated that they are addressing drivers' and passengers' expectations of staying connected to the rest of their digital world while in their vehicles. This requires a robust, secure connection. Ford will use Vodafone's global SIM and Internet of Things platform to bring safety, security, diagnostic and infotainment services to Ford vehicles right across Europe, in compliance with strict new EU regulations.