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MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Thu Jan 10, 2019 3:56 pm
by athlon770
Hello everyone, just recently purchased my '18 Bolt Premium, I also own a '17 Volt Premium. We are truly an electric family :D

Loving the Bolt so far, but only 2 weeks into the ownership I have found a glaring issue. I called OnStar and they transferred me to the Infotainment team where I was given the particular response of "yes, they removed that feature from 2018 and 2019 vehicles".

The feature they are talking about is when you have a phone paired to the vehicle (I have a Android (Note9)) that when you press the Voice Command button on the steering wheel, it no longer gives you the voice commands that we know and "love". All it does is pull up the phone dialer on the main screen.

No activation prompts, nothing. All it pulls up is the phone dialer. I can't even say "call whoever"...there is no prompt!

For instance, in my Volt, I press the voice control button, get a ding, and I say, "call wife cell" and it replies "do you want me to call wife cell?", and I say "yes" and it does it...odd, I know, right? I can do this from any screen. Same for playing music, I press the voice control button, get a ding, and I say, "play Parov Steller" and the radio starts playing the requested group from my USB drive.

The Infotainment team says they removed this functionality...WHY? They can't seriously think it would be safer for me to press the button when I want to make a call, then go over to the screen, search for the person I want to call, find the number I want to call, then tap on the number to call...all while driving...can they? And don't even get me started on finding a group to listen to on the USB connection. How can all that be easier than pressing the button and asking the system to do what needs done?

So, I search the net and find nothing, I search this forum, and nothing. Is this only happening to me and the Infotainment guy just wanted to get me off his phone? Or does no one use the voice command button to make calls?

I have already reset the radio to factory, and cleared all personal settings with no luck. I have no problems in my Volt and fully expect the Bolt to have the same functionality. Am I alone with this issue? Does everyone else's voice commands work?

Looking forward to your replies so I can figure out my next steps.

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:46 am
by SeanNelson
I installed Android Auto on my smart phone (Samsung Galaxy S7) and I plug it into the USB port when I drive. It lets me navigate, make phone calls, receive and send texts all via voice command (although it can be very recalcitrant when you're trying to dictate text messages). You just say "OK Google" and then give some command like "Navigate to... <place>", or "Phone Mary" or "What's the weather forecast for Seattle?".

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:05 am
by SparkE
Sean - do you have a 2018 or 2019 Bolt, or earlier?

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:54 pm
by SeanNelson
SparkE wrote:Sean - do you have a 2018 or 2019 Bolt, or earlier?

It's an autumn-build 2017.

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:42 am
by SparkE
athlon770 wrote:Hello everyone, just recently purchased my '18 Bolt Premium, I also own a '17 Volt Premium. We are truly an electric family :D

Loving the Bolt so far, but only 2 weeks into the ownership I have found a glaring issue. I called OnStar and they transferred me to the Infotainment team where I was given the particular response of "yes, they removed that feature from 2018 and 2019 vehicles".

The feature they are talking about is when you have a phone paired to the vehicle (I have a Android (Note9)) that when you press the Voice Command button on the steering wheel, it no longer gives you the voice commands that we know and "love". All it does is pull up the phone dialer on the main screen.

No activation prompts, nothing. All it pulls up is the phone dialer. I can't even say "call whoever"...there is no prompt!

For instance, in my Volt, I press the voice control button, get a ding, and I say, "call wife cell" and it replies "do you want me to call wife cell?", and I say "yes" and it does it...odd, I know, right? I can do this from any screen. Same for playing music, I press the voice control button, get a ding, and I say, "play Parov Steller" and the radio starts playing the requested group from my USB drive{...}


Sean - you appear to be in the "2017 case" (see bolded underlined, above).

athlon770 - are you pairing via bluetooth? (I assume so.) Have you tried connecting via a USB cable (with data capabilities - most have that, but some cheapo cables do not) ?? Does connecting to USB solve your problem?

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 5:21 pm
by SeanNelson
SparkE wrote:Sean - you appear to be in the "2017 case" (see bolded underlined, above).

You don't need OnStar to use Android Auto, as long as you have a data plan for your phone.

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:50 am
by SparkE
I believe he called OnStar during the 3-month-free-trail period to ask "WTF ?!!!? Why doesn't this work like it does in my Volt!!!???" (But I could have misinterpreted.)

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Mon Jan 14, 2019 9:42 am
by SeanNelson
SparkE wrote:I believe he called OnStar during the 3-month-free-trail period to ask "WTF ?!!!? Why doesn't this work like it does in my Volt!!!???" (But I could have misinterpreted.)

He did phone OnStar to complain about the voice control button not working. My point was that with Android Auto you don't need to use the voice control button - you just say "OK Google...", wait for the acknowledgement bleep, and then give your command - which can include navigation instructions, requests to play music, initiating phone calls, receiving or sending text messages, and even asking general questions like "What's the wind in Seattle?"

I assume that Apple CarPlay works in a similar fashion.

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2019 3:56 pm
by athlon770
Hi Sean, Spark...

I do have Android Auto installed and that works, and I found out what I was doing wrong with the long press of the command button...I was not looking at my phone where it was asking how I want to complete the action...Google...Bixby.

So, I have to long press the voice command button to make a phone call which completes through my phone...an 'ok' work around I guess, at least I can now make phone calls without swerving all over the road scrolling through my contacts list.

BUT, I still have no voice access to my songs on my USB stick. Which is still frustrating, especially as the menu commands on the Bolt for the media player, well, lets just say they suck!

What I miss...

I should be able to quick press the Voice Command button on the steering wheel and tell the car "Play Alice in Chains", or "Play Goldfish" as I can do in my 2017 Volt. I still cannot fathom why the programers of the controlling system would remove this, and I hope to God in a future update I do not loose this in my Volt!

Re: MyLink Voice Commands

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2019 7:51 pm
by SparkE
athlon770 -

Have you tried plugging the phone in to USB, then simply saying "OK Google" to talk to THE PHONE and then tell the phone what you want? That doesn't work? (i.e., skip the "press button" step, and replace it with saying "OK, google")