WES2009: Vlingo 3.0 Adds Enhanced Features

By Adam Zeis on 6 May 2009 10:36 am EDT


Vlingo officially announced today that they have added some great new features in their latest version. We've checked out Vlingo in the past and it has had a good response overall.  For those that don't know, Vlingo allows you to easily perform common tasks on your Blackberry device using your voice. With Vlingo 3.0, users can send and reply to text messages with other Vlingo users, search the web, dial the phone, update Facebook and Twitter and even launch applications.  BlackBerry smartphone users can get additional voice capabilities, including the ability to send and reply to text messages and emails to anyone for a one-time charge of $17.99. Existing users of Vlingo 2.0 can continue to use Vlingo 2.0 at no additional charge. Vlingo 3.0 is available for download here.

Topics: Apps

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

Reader comments

WES2009: Vlingo 3.0 Adds Enhanced Features


I have version 2.1 installed, and it does everything listed in this summary, for free.

I don't get it, what am I missing??

i'm not seeing anything really that 3.0 offers that 2.0 doesn't. now if you download 3.0, you can only text anyone if you pay for the premium version but in 2.0 i'm doing that now for free.

first you only pay for the new enhanced features it still is free for the upgrade version. Check out thier page for the info. I have installed it for the storm 9530, however it seems to be having trouble with recognizing the activation button. I have mine set to the left side and in version 2.1 it worked great. With 3.0 it keeps saying did not recognize me pushing the button. So may be an issue with it or might be me. I am still messing with it as I type.

I've looked at their site. The features that they list as being new and pay only in version 3.0 are ALREADY IN 2.1.

I know you can upgrade to 3.0 for free from 2.1, but only to the basic version. If you upgrade to 3.0, the ability to text anyone is no longer available unless you pay for the premium. These premium features are available free on 2.1 so if you want to keep using those features for free, you have to stick with 2.1. It even says on the description that 2.1 users can continue using 2.1 at no charge.

But texting to anyone is the main reason I use this app, so I can't upgrade because then I'd have to pay for this ability.

unfortunately, it does not appear to be working with the storm properly at this time. Even though the 2.1 ver was not storm compatible it worked fine with a few quirks. The new version will not recognize either of the activation buttons, at least not that so far. Now I am trying to find a way to reinstall the old version. I would hold off at this time.

* Adds support for the BlackBerry Storm, including full integration with the Storm's keyboard.
* Adds support for the BlackBerry Pearl Flip (8220) and Curve II (8900).
* Adds support for many Bluetooth headsets.
* Allows you to send emails from any email account on your phone, rather than only from your default account.
* Web search is much faster and requires fewer steps, as a result of using an embedded browser.
* Allows you to speak action commands such as 'Call' and 'Send' as well as pressing a menu key.
* Adds support for the + character in phone number fields for dialing international phone numbers.
* Fixes a number of issues that users had reported in version 2.0 and 2.1. For example, you should consider upgrading to Vlingo 3.0 if you've been experiencing any of the following issues:
o Problems setting Vlingo's permissions or running in a corporate (BES) environment.
o Occasional Request Timeout or Can't Connect errors.
o Vlingo stops responding when you press the side key to speak.
o Vlingo doesn't recognize some contacts in your Address Book.

Note that Vlingo 2.0 is still a free product for existing users. If you choose to upgrade to Vlingo 3.0, you'll still be able to use many of Vlingo's features for free, but you'll be subject to the same pricing as other 3.0 users for sending email and unlimited text messages.

Still no BBM support. The only thing I really wanted that wasn't part of 2.1 is BBM support, and it didn't happen.

Maybe I'm off my rocker here, but this looks like a blatant cash grab to me. Almost nothing in the way of new features, and a pretty hefty price tag for an app that was free a week ago.

If Vlingo wanted to become a pay app instead of giving the service away, just say so.

dont dl it. i went from being able to text anyone with 2.1 to only being able to text vlingo ppl, which are none of my contacts, with the upgrade. do. not. dl. it

anyone know a link to the old 2.1 please?

It says on the blog that if you decide 3.0 isn't for you, than you can tell them and they will let you downgrade back to 2.1. This only applies to people that had 2.1 in the past so those that have not downloaded the previous version are screwed.
I expected them to eventually have a pay version of the product that had increased functionality. I did not expect them to start charging for basic functions and make the "fluff" free. Disappointing

i like the new look and interface alot better and the vibrate side function etc and how its quicker but... $18...way too much

There is no way anyone could convince me that sending a text message or an email with voice commands is worth $18. On top of that it seems that vlingo 3.0 while it does support bluetooth headsets, it does not seem to support the send/end button found on many of those headsets, such as the Motorola H700. Normally this button would activate the built in RIM Voice Activated Dialing, but it does not currently work with vlingo.

This seems like a huge miss to me, as requiring the user to hold the phone in their hand and press and hold a button on the phone is not really "hands free". If it could at least activate vlingo like it does for the built in RIM vad that would be great. And that might make it a little easier to deal with the idea of upgrading to the Plus edition.

Vlingo allows you to launch BlackBerry Messenger by voice (say: "open BlackBerry Messenger"), but at the current time it does not support speaking your messages.

I've never been overly excited about vlingo. I keep trying it every time they update it, but it never seems to adjust to my voice, no matter how many times I try. After a couple of weeks, I gave up. That was when it was free. The only reasons I would use it are apparently only part of the premium version now. So, my motivation to try it is even less now.

I recently had to wipe my device and lost the 2.0 version. So now when I go to downlowd again only 3.0 is available, and does not do features the old version did. I was able to speak "text name" and I could say a text message to anyone. Now it says the other person has to have vlingo....what????

This wasn't cool. I thought I was updating to something better than what I had. I was able to text anyone from my 2.0. So I updated to the 3.0. Now I have to pay for a service that I had for free 5 min ago. I screwed up and should of read the entire article. Bye bye vlingo

I refuse to pay for this piece of crap...no way I'm downloading it. I hope the greedy ba*&%$ds from Vlingo are reading this. However, the are probably too busy counting money. Is Madoff running this company from prison?

I refuse to pay for this piece of crap...no way I'm downloading it. I hope the greedy ba*&%$ds from Vlingo are reading this. However, the are probably too busy counting money. Is Madoff running this company from prison?

I'm disappointed in this version since you have to pay to send messages to those that don't use Vlingo. I found the previous version extremely useful, but now I may be forced to pay the fee.
Oh well

Im glad I read the entire post...I thought I was getting something more with the upgrade, boy am I glad I still have 2.0 and its all free!

I understand the need to have revenue coming in. I am not at all opposed to paying for something I deem necessary, convenient, etc. However, I think they went a little too far in the opposite direction. I also think they should have been a little more upfront in the beginning about their intentions (like when they started working on version 3), but that's a moot point now. What I really don't like (other than having to use either Handango or Appworld) is that according to the terms of service (I received an email stating this), you cannot transfer a license from one device to another. So, we have to pay $17 (where they came up with that dollar amount is anyone's guess - seems a bit odd to me, but I'm sure they had market research done, right?) for features that were free before springing this version on everyone, and if our device dies necessitating a warranty replacement, we have to buy it again? I think this finally helps me make up my mind about this app/service. I'm going to pass.

Vlingo is an amazing app, but I do not know how to lookup a contact from my address book... so as to see the contacts address, notes, othe phone numbrs, etc... Can anyone please help me with the proper command or technique?

Also, I notice that I cannot use the Storms built-in voice dialer if this is installed... having a difficult time using the Motorola T505 hands free speakerphone. Pressing the button to make a call, on the T505, will engage the Storm's built-in voice dialer and the storm will not hear any command I give it. The same holds true if I use the Storm's voice dial directly on the phone.

Any ideas will be greatly appreciated!


OK! Vlingo great idea...extremely poor execution.

Lets talk about Voice Dial. I have over 2000 contacts on my phone book. i dont look up the phone or press any buttons when i use voice dial from my bluetooth headset using bb voice dial.

since it gives you voice response and ask if i wish to call the person i asked for and which number. where as vlingo useless voice dial just displays the list of contacts. and waits for user to select a person manually. this is such a useless feature. imean if i have to navigate from phone why in the world do i use voice dial? where are the prompts to acknowledge confirm ask which number? think about using the voice dial while riding a motorcycle and using the bluetooth helmet.....just ridiculous that vlingo cant even think straight from the usability perspective. BB may not perfect voice dial but does the real good job for Voice Dial. get some clue Vlingo....

if i have to use voice based search my google mobile does the very good job...dont care vlingo crap.

I always thought the concept of Vlingo was a good one. I used 2.0 and although it was pretty good at recognizing speach, there was still too much manual interraction with the BB to get things sent/saved. You still had to scroll & click to get things done. Vlingo made it easier to use your voice for doing things, but it didn't make things "hands free".

From what I've seen, the added features in 3.0 don't outweigh the loss of free features in 2.x. Better bluetooth support is a good thing. Charging for something that was free (and still is to people stull using 2.x) is really not going to bring more people to the software.

If they truly made the software "hands free", I could see the benefit of paying for the software. With just a few additional hardware options, and charging for something that is still free to use in a lesser version, I think the high price will bring down the popularity of Vlingo.

I don't know if anyone else noticed this but the Vlingo seems to be service dependent where as if you for some reason aren't getting a signal you cant use the "note to self" or launch programs either I would assume.

Now they're offering Vlingo Plus with a 25% discount but they've upped the price to $19.99 and discount down to $14.99 Another cheap trick! Do they really think we're all stupid sheep, blindly following them wherever they want to take us? Come on, Vlingo people. Stick to the pricing plan, and stop sticking it to the would-be-customers.

I don't understand Vlingo's pricing structure. You can either pay $20, OR pay a $3.99 monthly fee. What's up with that? I don't get it. I mean the monthly fee would bring this up to $50 per year! What am I missing?