Many people with the Samsung i9100 Galaxy S II have become very dissapointed with the built-in “Voice Talk” app that comes standard with these phones, this blog entry gives steps required to replace this app with something that works correctly with Bluetooth headsets. The replacement app I suggest is only a voice dialing app, but the same procedure below can be used to replace with any app that you choose.Basically, when you press the button on a Bluetooth headset, Voice Talk comes up regardless if you have installed another voice dialler. The trick is to disable Voice Talk first. The short answer: you need to root your phone, “freeze” Voice Talk, and install another voice dialler app. I will explain this in more detail below! It only takes about 10 minutes or less.
This problem is particularly troubling for people who ride motorcycles and want to make calls while riding. The reason is that Voice Talk utilizes the phone’s built-in speaker for confirmations when you are making outgoing phone calls. This is unacceptable.
Essentially, the Voice Talk app that comes as default on the Galaxy SII when used in conjunction with a bluetooth headset such as the Cardo Systems Scala Rider headsets, is almost useless because it uses the phone’s speaker for things. Even worse, Voice Talk often requires you to push buttons on the screen to confirm commands.
It would be nice to have the Voice Talk functionality truely handsfree also for GPS navigation on a motorcycle, where you can say “Hi Galaxy! Navigate to Tim Hortons on 58th Ave SE, Calgary!”. Presently this requires you to push various buttons on the handset to accomplish. Unfortunately I have not found an alternate way to do this yet with the Galaxy S2 so if any readers know how to do this on a bluetooth headset truely handsfree, please comment below!
Here is my quick solution to obtain true handsfree outgoing phone calls using bluetooth headsets on the Galaxy SII:
1. Root your phone. This allows you to have super-user authority over your phone. I found instructions specific to users on the Bell Canada network, here: http://androidforums.com/galaxy-s2-international-all-things-root/385099-how-unlock-root-bell-galaxy-s2-step-step-guide.html You only need to do steps up to and including STEP 8.
2. Optionally you can follow the instructions in the link above to unlock your phone so that you have a world-phone, and can insert any carrier’s SIM card. This is not a required step however, but a nice bonus of having a rooted phone if you travel a lot or change carriers but keep your phone.
3. On the Andriod marketplace install the free “Titanium Backup Free”, and do a complete backup of the system + apps. This is just precautionary in case something doesn’t work right in step 4.
4. Install from the marketplace “AntTek App Manager” which is a free app that allows you to “freeze” apps that came standard with the Galaxy S2. There is no need to buy Titanium Backup Pro, AntTek App Manager does the same things for free. I have used it and it works great. It can also save you some battery life if you disable apps such as Wi-Fi sharing, and Wi-Fi sharing manager.
5. Using AntTek App Manager, freeze “Voice Talk” app.
6. From the andriod market place, install “Cyberon Voice Speed Dial” (free). Once you open and configure this app it will now be the default app that is activated when you press the button on your bluetooth headset!
7. Congratulations you’re done!
Note, that there are a lot of voice dial apps available on the andriod market that you can choose from. So far the Cyberon Voice Speed Dial is the one that seems to work the best for me. It’s simple, and does not use data. Many of the dialers use data, so this limits their reliability if you’re riding your motorcyle in the mountains for example, where there might be poor data access, or if you are without a data plan (such as travelling in Thailand on your motorcycles like I did), it’s best not to rely on always having a data plan.
There is a lot of bloatware and apps on Andriod that are useless, and it might save battery life to use AntTek to freeze these. Here is a list of apps that I’ve frozen on my phone with success:
com.sec.android.app.lcdtest com.sec.android.app.samsungapps.una com.sec.android.app.snsimagecache Days DigiLezen Digital clock Dual clock Game Hub Home screen tips IMEITracker Kobo Microbes Mini diary Mini paper Mobile Print Mobile tracker Ocean weather Pico TTS Readers Hub Samsung Apps Samsung MMM SNS SNS disclaimer SNSAccountFb SNSAccountLi SNSAccountMs SNSAccountTw Social Hub Task Windy weather wipeoutreceiver Yahoo! Finance Zinio Reader Wi-Fi sharing Wi-Fi sharing manager Wi-Fi Bell PVR Zoom Pass