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Voice Dialing Woes...

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I love my new 2008 400h as far as the auto itself goes - but voice interface is embarrassingly bad - I really don't see how a company like Lexus could let the system roll off the line for a $50,000 automobile.

Voice dialog, what should be a one-click operation, takes so many delays, button presses, and confirmations that it's virtually useless, and the name dialing isn't even speaker-independent but is template-based and must be trained per-item. Dialog with the verbose female prompt is so bad, it sounds like a pardody of a 'bot from a bad BBC space-comedy.

The advise of the resident Lexus tech. specialist is to simply not use the feature and rely on position-dependent speed-dials. (Remeber those boxes from the '70s??)

So, okay, the system is pretty bad -- but I should just be able to click on the voice button and instead have it initiate the great voice-dialing that my phone (blackberry pearl - speaker-independent and updated over-the-air from my exchange server) already has, right?

(Just as any $40 bluetooth headset could do.) Hmm- no, can't seem to find an option for voice bypass to the phone.

Not only can voice dialing not be initiated from the car, but if I initiate voice-dialing from the phone, the phone recieves input from neither the 400h's mic., nor the blackberry mic. which is now shunted by the bluetooth connection.

I miss the voice prompting (TTS street names, etc.), great rendering and sensible features that my Garmin Nuvi nav. had as well, but I can live with a worse nav. - but really, I think I should be able to dial my phone for $50,000.

Anyone please have a solution for this??


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