Microsoft drives a Ford around the country, improves lives through tech wherever they stop

So last month, Microsoft PH hopped onto a Ford Ranger (from Aracama at the Fort) to travel around the Philippines to showcase their latest tech around the country. This isn’t your typical “Windows and Microsoft Office” tech — they’re more software and infrastructure related. Here’s a quick list of some of the stuff they’re working on:

  • Rapid Signal Electronics in GenSan (an innovation that transmits signals through wireless technology to make machines work)
  • Taxi ATM Card Terminals in Davao which allows you to do cashless payments for cab rides (very useful especially if you have no change!)
  • CEPALCO Solar Power Plant in Cagayan de Oro (a power plant that has 6,500 solar panels set on two hectares of land)
  • Automated Rain Gauges in Iloilo (a real-time data weather system that helps forecast strong rains and flash floods)

For those of you wondering what Ford has to do with Microsoft, Ford has a lot of geek cred when it comes to the turning the car into a digital platform. For one thing, the Ford Sync (now known as MyTouch) runs on Microsoft’s technology. Voice commands, touch screen interfaces and yes, even turning the entire car into a wireless hotspot is stock with the car. It’s pretty much a computer: you can update your Ford’s Firmware using wireless Internet.

I’ve test-driven Ford cars before so you can check out the MyTouch in action:

1. Touch screen console operation with the Ford Explorer’s MyTouch (with butt airconditioning)
2. The built in voice commands for the Ford Fiesta

“Today, we’re launching Microsoft’s I.T.: It’s More Fun in the Philippines campaign that is in line with our plan to increase our focus on empowering Filipino-owned businesses and helping them achieve global competitiveness through productivity solutions and continuous innovations. To kick start this program, we will be having a 15-city productivity roadshow that will also highlight some of the most fascinating innovations in the country. These innovations, we hope, will inspire and drive entrepreneurs and businesses in using technology, powered by our IT and productivity solutions, to further achieve success. We are working together with the local government units (LGUs) to mobilize our roadshow at the provincial level and show how our technology can improve in their operations”

On the Microsoft front, I would like to introduce all you geeks to Ms. Karrie Capellan-Ilagan (photo above), the new Managing Director of Microsoft. (And I must say … wow, what a looker! Also I say this in a non-stalkerish, completely wholesome manner). Not only is she the first female headmaster of Microsoft Philippines, she definitely claims top spots for most attractive lady bosses in tech together with .. let’s see … Nikka Abes of Nokia Philippines (unanimously voted by many bloggers and also a staunch supporter of Windows Phone!) Ms. Karrie, if you’re reading this, please say hello to me in the next press conference!

[L-R]: Randy Krieger, President, Ford Group Philippines, Congressman Tinga of Taguig City, Karrie Capellan-Ilagan, Managing Director, Microsoft Philippines, Leo Tolentino, AVP, Green Futures Technology, Inc.

For those of you who don’t know, I had the privilege of helping out Microsoft PH in a number of campaigns back when they launched Windows 7 and the brand new Windows Phone 7 back in 2010. From my observations walking in and out of their office regularly, I would always see the Microsoft PH conference rooms filled with multi-sector seminars and workshops on IT. This is really Microsoft’s core business in the Philippines and only recently entered the consumer space to support the Windows Phone devices. So a road show is really Microsoft’s core competence as they’ve been assisting these sectors for many years now. The only difference is that they’re doing it under a thematic ‘More Fun in the Philippines’ program together with Ford.

Follow them at:

Twitter: @microsoftPH
Facebook: Microsoft Philippines

Roadshow Schedule:

General Santos September 10, 2012
Davao City September 12, 2012
Cagayan de Oro September 14, 2012
Cebu City September 17, 2012
Bacolod September 19, 2012
Iloilo September 21, 2012
Baguio City September 24, 2012
Clark, Pampanga September 26, 2012
Subic September 28, 2012
Batangas October 1, 2012
Cavite / Laguna October 3, 2012
Quezon City October 5, 2012
Pasig City October 8, 2012
Manila October 10, 2012
Makati October 12, 2012


By Jayvee Fernandez

Jayvee Fernandez is a tech enthusiast and sitting Techbology Editor for The Philippine STAR.

He is also an EAN certified SCUBA Diver and underwater photographer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. His photos and videos have appeared in various international and local publications including Random House Germany, Discovery Channel Canada, and CNN.

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