Reads Your Emails and SMS Out Loud

By Adam Zeis on 25 Sep 2009 01:53 pm EDT

There is an endless line of applications that try to make it safer to drive with your BlackBerry. As CrackBerry Abusers, we find it near impossible to drive without checking our emails or SMS on the road. hopes to help keep us all safer on the move with their free application. As emails or SMS messages come in, will read them out loud so you don't need to take your eyes off the road. You can choose to have the messages automatically played, or on-demand through the menu. The obvious downside to the free version is that there are sponsor messages which can become annoying after time, however there is also a pro version of the application that adds additonal voices and is sponsor free. is available as a free download in the CrackBerry App Store.

Topics: Apps

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments Reads Your Emails and SMS Out Loud


its awsome, it does just what is says it does. my device is a Bold 9700. It reads email and sms. You can set it to only read SMS though.

I downloaded this software and it would not work telling me error that it is accessing some api. Would have been nice but after a review froma person at the download site, that really turned me off. "R"

ok I downloaded and I got this error when I tried to run
Error starting Drivesafely:Module 'DriveSafely' attempts to acess a secure API

any help with this??

same thing, I am assuming it has trouble with my work microsoft exchange, a shame because this would have been a real useful application

If you really "find it near impossible to drive without checking emails or SMS on the road", then do us all a favor and either stop driving or get a handle on your addiction.

How many more people have to be injured or killed all because some selfish driver couldn't wait to answer the beep of an incoming message.

Check your priorities people.

I paid for the pro version and now, suddenly, it's stopped reading emails. Texts are fine - and so is the manual option...

I will try it out. Seems like it would be good for when you are in the middle of working on something and can't stop to check your messages. Its free so what the heck.

it gave me the same error and when I went to delete it, my applications took almost 2 mins to load. Slowed my BB down like an old windows computer.

works great, had a little problem with the api but got it working. This will keep me a lot safer in the car because I already got a traffic violation ticket for talking on the phone. Now if I can only get an app that can do this for coloring books

As paodomingo stated above, just go and download it directly from their site, works perfectly fine on my tour running .230

Why does it read out the number and not the name of the person!? (for sms)

And it should wait till the phone stops ringing before talking. Or just plain stop the ring tone by itself when it's ready

You need to relearn how to behave on the road. actually you should lose your driving licence because you don't deserve it

I get an error message popping up when I try to start the application. It states: Error starting DriveSafely: Module 'DriveSafely' attempts to access a secure API. What does this mean?

great little app! Fantastic potential! Toooooo buggy...stops reading randomly until battery pull.

Good luck!

I have downloaded the app, updated all the settings, but when I turned on the app and sent a test message nothing happens? Does this app track speed somehow to only turn on when going a certain speed? Otherwise, not sure what this app does because it does not seem to read anything!

Are you sure it's on? You should have a RED ON button showing. I made this mistake also and clicked it, thinking I had to click it to turn it on. Make sure the button is RED and all options are checked...should work like a charm.

I have to open it, then hit menu, read w/ drive safely...

Does the free version maybe not auto-ready them? It works if I ask it to read, but I thought this was an automatic thing. It says "Hands Free - No need to touch the phone while driving"

Am I missing a setting?

What they don't tell you, is that the app emails back a reply to the sender, letting them know that you heard the email read out loud, and then points to the dl link.

That's sneaky.


It is working (sort of) on my Storm. But it is too loud and I can't get the volume down. Also it will only read the sender name, subject and first few lines.

It did not read the full message and also did what Wighed said although I turned it off. I deleted it too....

It works well, I am considering purchasing, but but 3.95/month or 13.95/lifetime of device is a bit high for me. Maybe I am just cheap.

Id pay for this if the premium version alowed you to send emails and sms by talking into the phone...thats the biggest problem..not reading them but typing them. Is there an app out there that lets you send sms by talking?

I'll second that on vlingo. It does do that.
Even the free version lets you do that, except it won't actually send the email or text. But it's very accurate.

The two combined might be a practical combo.

I'm a big fan of this app. I've been using it since the beta was released and find it very useful to have e-mails and SMS messages read to me.
It still has a lot of quirks (like reading HTML e-mails), and I haven't been able to get it to work with bluetooth yet. If you tell the software to ignore profiles, it seems to read automatically without any problems - I haven't had it read properly when the profile option is set.

For just being released, it is a very good addition. It still has some room for improvement that will hopefully come soon. :)

On my storm the keyboard is always up when I open the program. Both in and out of compatibility mode. How do I get this off? Thanks

Stupid question...when it is RED and says ON does that mean it's on or does that mean click to turn it on?

Otherwise I'm pretty excited about this, my mom has a habit of texting me while I'm driving and then freaking out because I didn't get back to her ASAP. Now I can have it auto send her a text that I'm driving and will get back to her as well as have her text read to me so I know if there's an emergency and need to call. :)

I have the same question regarding the red on button.

Also, it reads the txts wonderfully when I manually open one with "read with" but I am struggling to get it to auto-read with the Tour.

The RED "ON" button means it's on. I had the same problem. I got an email reply within 10 minutes from support. Seems the support on this app is amazing also.

when you adjust the volume it just goes back to the 90 setting and it is too loud. there is no option to save the new volume setting so it resets to the default.

I notice that in version 1.03, they've 'solved' the email not reading aloud problem by simply removing the option to tie in or not with the phone sound profile. I hope this is temporary, as the option to mute this app along with the rest of the phone in invaluable!

I shocked there are so many people negatively reviewing this app. I've had this app since damn near the launch of the beta. Not only have I not had any problems with it, but I have an old curve 8320. It works great too. As a poster already stated, you can change the settings to not auto reply. I don't understand why people complain about something they never tried to figure out. Im running the free version and have had no problems. Nice app. Thanks developers

Vlingo does not read messages to you. You speak to it and it writes the messages for you. This app is the opposite. You can't speak into the app and have it write anything for you, but it reads your messages aloud. I have both apps and they both serve there purposes well.

have it working on my 8330 from sprint pretty neat, have the free version testing it out can get only 25 words on the free version through play around with it some more

I really like the quality of the voice. Has anyone got the autoread feature working properly on the Tour?

I am 100% backing this app. I've also been beta testing from the start and can definately say that this will somewhere along the line save a life!

I have an 8900 in the UK and it works pefectly! I definately urge everyone to download and use this app!

just installed, runs very nice. I sent myself an email with just the word "douchebag". It read it as "dooka bag" This could turn out to be a very entertaining app.


Downloaded from the website without a problem. Paired to my bluetooth and vlingo = a perfect combo. I listened to my email and responded all night - via bluetooth with no problems.. no it..

I try to change the response message and it never saves. Need to fix that, or teach me how to do it right.

Another thing....I see that you can send through Bluetooth but what about sending through a wired headset? This would be a great feature since I could use it on my motorcycle. This would let me know if I need to pull over somewhere to reply or not. I sometimes use my headphones (ear buds) to listen to music on trips and it would work great.

it works on my Bold and is great. it gives me enough of the message to see if i need to respond or it can wait until later. big time saver and much safer. thanks

I sent an email to regarding issues I was having with the auto-reader and the Tour. I sent it well after midnight and had a response within minutes. Fantastic.

BTW, the auto-reader began to work properly after I physically removed the battery to reboot (I had been using QuickPull). I don't know why it should make a difference, but everything works great now.

I just downloaded this app to check it out and its limited to 25 words and one voice with the free version but it isn't too bad. The one funny thing i found about it was when it reads a text message and someone typed Im it reads it as "instant message"!

This is great and company is listening to feedback. Trying to tweak better for Storm, and would like to silence app when profile is on vibrate except when i use bluetooth. Cant't believe it is free. It is fast and accurate!!!

i downloaded free version and then bought the pro code and validated in advance settings. however only 25-30 words are read on emails and stops at random words. i made sure number of words to read is set to 500. i have the storm. Any solution?

do not download this app. its not worth your memory space. the free voice reads the message too fast and it is hard to understand.

Seems there may be a problem with auto read when using a BES server. I am getting sms to work with no issues. Support at reports that there is a permission that must be enable on BES servers. Instructions to come...

Anyone who is having problems with automatic read back of emails (especially if your sms is working) report if you are using bes server and help verify this is cause.

Support has been contacted and says they will report on the issue (along with some other reported bugs) on Monday Sept, 28.

This really is a great application and if the issues are worked out, I see it as very!!! useful.

I got it for my wife and her 8330. She has some seeign issues and when she is on the go, she doesn't have time to focus on seeing the text of her emails and text messages. She loves it!! I have it on my 9530 also. My only suggestion is to get it to read more than 500 words especially if I bought the pro version!! Buying the pro version should give me the ability to have my whole email, and texts read!

I swear, this is the only bb app that i have ever/will ever pay for. best 14 bucks i've spent in a while.

I used this and i have to say it pissed me off today. My phone is set to vibrate and it still spoke out loud. I was at work and i tried to press buttons to shut it off fast and nothing worked. I checked the settings to see if theres anything to do with profiles and there is none. Not using this until they fix this. very disappointed this wasnt thought of

This always seems to happen with the free apps. I downloaded this app and when trying to open it, there was an upgrade to perform. So I did the upgrade and then opened the app again after rebooting. The app only displays in portrait mode, with the keyboard showing, and the only options are to upgrade to the pay app, share it with a friend, or some other option. It would not let me get past this screen. So I deleted it. If anyone can offer some help on how to make the keyboard disappear or how to get it to scroll down, then I would download it again. I am using a Storm 9530 on the Verizon network.


As of 9/31 I see there is an update. I notice with this update when you turn it on, it will speak to you to tell you that it is on.

Now that I removed this app from my Storm, the ring tones and text tones do not work. Anyone know how to make them work again? I've looked at every setting.

does anyone have this working with a bluetooth headset??? I have tried a few different ones without success... if one works I would probably buy that headset to work with the software. I think the software is AWESOME!

I have a Jabra JX20 and it works wonderfully. I have the Audio Ouput setting set as Bluetooth Stereo Audio.

I have tried everything and every setting to get this to work with bluetooth. Tried jawbone 2, plantronic 665, and gamin nuvi 760. I have tried bluetooth and bluetooth with stero..Have sprint tour..di you do anything special?

This application is just to awesome... They keep adding new features. Voice quality is topnotch. and The application works in real time. and that is just unbeatable.

I got the Pro version on my 8230 flip and it works wonderfully, but my father got it on his Curve and it doesn't load and brings up a popup saying unable to load net.rim.blackberry.api.mail.MimeBodyPart or something.

I hate licenses like this.

I understand the need to protect software from piracy but not at the expense of the end user.

Why should I pay twice if I decide to change my phone, lose my phone or have to replace a broken phone??

Surely these guys are smart enough to figure out a better licensing policy than 'one device or nothing'.

If they can code this application, they must be able to code an authentication method that allows for the deactivation of one device, followed by the activation of another device.

One phone activated per license at a time suits me just fine.

Furthermore, I do not believe that the $3.95 subscription is an option. It is far too expensive relative to the $13.95 lifetime option.

This is a great application and I'd buy it for $13.95 in a second, but only if they'd allow me to transfer it to my next phone (and so on).

Does anybody know this?

1. The End Now button often doesn't stop playback
2. How do you set the "on-demand" versus auto playback?
3. Can this be set to stop reading the whole email string?
4. Can bluetooth end playback?

I dl and installed this program last night worked good had some fun with it but today it keeps locking my phone up. I did 10 battery pulls and it works but if I get an email and a text at the same time or 2 emails at the same time it acts up. So now I'm gonna uninstall it.

This has totally messed up my phone. Cannot access anything. Had to completely rebuild the phone and it sill won't receive enterprise e-mail. The same thing happened to my friend.


This software works great on the BB Storm2, The Software reads the e-mails properly at least up to the first blank line then ends. Gives you a good idea of who sent it, the subject line and part of the body.
The only thing I was not pleased about was it replies to the sender of the e-mail an advertisment about the DriveSafe software. Sorta free advertisment for your using this so called Freebee. In the setup it tries to convince you that if you recomend the software to someone else it will give you a free Prolisence, but the lisence is limited to 30 for 5 friends and to obtain the unlimited one you need 25 friends. The software costs 13.95 / onetime it will read up to 500 words and has optional text and email auto-responder. No further details...


These people are driving me nuts with their barrage of text messages. I've tried contacting them from every way imaginable and they still refuse to take me off of their text contact list....

Warning Application sucks!

This app is such a godsend. It works amazingly well on my blackberry. Reads out my texts ( i upgraded to the pro version), hasn't affected any other functionaries and is a huge help when driving and expecting important calls or texts.

It freezes my Bold 9700 so I tried uninstalling and barely managed to uninstall before it froze again. Be warned.

I have downloaded the free version of this to try and found it quite useful while driving. I would like to know if anyone knows how to be able to have it so the messages would be able to come through my jawbone ear piece rather than my speaker on my phone? I've tried all the settings listed and still have not been successful in getting it to come through the ear piece. Any thoughts?

I downloaded and purchased the premium version of; It works fine when I have the speaker mode turn but wil not work when I switch to bluetooth mode. My phone works fine on bluetooth, I receive and I am able to dial out via bluetooth.I have a kenwood 516 that works perfectly with my Blackberry 8530. Has anyone encountered problems with and the 8530. I receive no error messages when email and text messages arrive, I do not hear anything. Has anyone encountered similiar problem or have suggestions?

Great little app! Don't have to go fishing through my e-mail to see if there is anything important....the app tells me what's there. Highly recommended!

I downloaded this app today and I have never been this amused in my life!!! All day long, my friends have been texting me dirty words and funny phrases and my phone is just blurting it all out, HILARIOUS!! If anything, get this just for fun. You will crack up.

I think it’s good that some developers have come up with innovative solutions to fight texting while driving. It’s a dangerous and irresponsible way to drive. There's a new app on the market called Text’nDrive that does a bit of a better job than this one. It reads emails, text and instant messages, and their website lists any new texting laws in the U.S. ( A really nice app!!

Can anyone assist with email integration for I want to add my 3rd party Google mail to the function of this application.