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How to use voice control on the BlackBerry Z30

By James Richardson on 8 Oct 2013 01:00 pm EDT
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Using voice control is certainly nothing new for BlackBerry 10 users. However, if you have just picked up the BlackBerry Z30 as your first BB10 device you'll be pleased to know that you can perform a range of tasks using voice control. 

I'll be totally honest and say that the voice control functions on the Z30 are certainly not on par with the likes of the iPhone or Android, but us BlackBerry people tend to be more hands on anyway. However, for certain situations it does come in jolly handy. 

To activate voice control you'll need to press the central button between the volume/media control keys on the right of the Z30. From here it's just a case of telling the BlackBerry what it is you want to do. It does take some getting used to but luckily you can press the 'i' icon at the top right of the display for a list of example commands that the Z30 will understand. 

You'll be pleased to know that if you do make an error while using voice to text there is an option to edit whatever command you are using and again this can be done without having to touch the BlackBerry. 

These range from making a phone call to messaging someone, either via email or BBM. Diving a bit further into the settings you'll find more in depth instructions. In total there are 16 categories. These include: 

  • Set a reminder
  • Post a LinkedIn update
  • Book a meeting or appointment
  • Searching 
  • Send messages
  • Change your Facebook status
  • Type using voice dictation
  • Using the BlackBerry Voice Control app
  • Set an alarm
  • Video: voice control basics
  • Post a tweet 
  • Check your battery level
  • Save notes and memos
  • Making a phone call
  • Change your voice response settings
  • Change your voice control language

The voice control on the BlackBerry Z30 is far from perfect and does require some patience and persistence, but once you have the hang of things it can certainly make life easier for you if you choose to use voice rather than typing. 

So there you have it. Voice control is there on the BlackBerry Z30 is you choose to use it. For many folk it may only be used when driving, however, please make sure you only do this if the law permits. Here in the UK we can't even touch our phones without running the risk of getting a ticket - safety first. 

Reader comments

How to use voice control on the BlackBerry Z30

35 Comments

I find the voice command to be average at best and abysmal at worst. There have been times I've spoken entire sentences and it has spit out a one word result. Sayit seems to work much better, but at a price.

Posted via CB10

I understand that the Z30 is the new phone and people might come to crackberry looking for focused support (Z30 specific support as opposed to Z10 instructions) but is it really necessary to list this as Z30 specific when the same steps to activate this feature actually hold true to all BlackBerry 10 devices. Why not just title it "How To_______on BlackBerry 10" and mention that this is for all BlackBerry 10 devices including the Z10/30 and Q10/5 it would save the writer a lot of work and it would make things more streamlined on the site (one article rather than say four.)

Just my opinion.

Posted via CB10

Z30 owners are likely to list their specific device when doing a search for help. That's the best way to find help for their device - rather than a general bb10 search.

Also, while things may be the same for this function, there are some 10.2 specific features. Most Z10 owners don't have 10.2 loaded. Those that do, will likely infer the feature is the same with their leaked OS. Or they already know.

Hopefully we can get an update to this feature that will make it a tad bit better.

On The Underrated Never Duplicated Z10 10.1.0.4200

I wish BlackBerry would make voice controls macro style. You could train your phone with a verbal command of your choosing to perform actions that are more customized.

Ie. By saying "first" it would open your Crackberry app.. where you would post first and end up fifth.

Tapped lovingly on my z10 until I quit Rogers and get my Z30

Posted via CB10

Hi, there features require scripting for your macros. As far as I know there is the very powerful "ShortcutMe" but it currently is available only for BBOS with a keyboard. You can even link it to NFC tags.

Posted via CB10

I find Sayit better. BlackBerry should focus it's resources where it needs to. Integrate Sayit and spend more time getting bbm running.

Posted via CB10

I dont.....she is an older gal and not very attractive. She has been on TV lately. They shouldn't do that!

BlackBerry will survive in the Corporate and Government Sectors! My Z10 is so much better than an iphone!

I hope 10.2 makes it a bit better.
Typical conversation:
"What would you like to do"?
"Call so and so"
Pause, pause, pause.
"Would you like to call so and so now"?
"Yes".
Pause pause pause
"I did not understand your answer. Pause pause. Would you like to call so and so now"?
YES!!
Pause*, pause, pause.
"Calling so and so".
My blue tooth Garmin "sorry, you have run out of time - click"!!
You get the picture!! I still like it as sometimes it works and gives me a laugh!!

Posted via CB10 on my Q10

All BlackBerry voice controls I've used, Sayit included don't work. If they could understand me at the end they'd think I've got tourettes where I swear at the f*****g things that much. Give up, wait a few years and make use of the amazing keyboards :)

Posted via my CB Q10

With Voice Control on Z30 and 10.2, you can actually do a lot more stuff than before. You can ask questions like "How tall is the CN tower?" or "How much does a hippopotamus weigh?" and it will answer those questions with Wolfram Alpha.

It also DOES read messages! Just say "Read last message", "Read last BBM" or "Read last text message" and voice control will read them out!

Want to go somewhere? Just say "Give me directions to the nearest Starbucks"!

You can also say navigate to

And after its read the message to you, you can reply by saying "reply", compose your response, and send it.

Posted via CB10

You can also check the status of things on your phone like: Check wifi network, Check battery, or check mobile network...

I'm actually learning that there's a lot you can do with the voice commands that I didn't realize. I wouldn't mind seeing an article covering the breadth of what all we can do via the stock voice command feature.

"The Best Device is Debatable - The Best Security is Not"

I found the voice control a bit twitchy out if the box until I took the time to adjust. An easy fix.

Sent from my BlackBerry Z30