By Vincent Hennigan, Sync Specialist
Let’s face it, sometimes phones don’t seem to work well with Sync… so is the problem with Sync or is it with the phone? The open architecture of the Sync systems allows it to work with a wide variety of phones. When problems occur you have to run down a list of things to check to see where the problems lies… and Blackberry phones are a world unto themselves.
One thing that makes this so frustrating is a lot of companies select Blackberry phones as the “company phone.” So as a user you may not want this type of phone but your company does.
So let’s look at some of the common Blackberry/Sync issues and try to present some good solutions. One of those issues is when you try to pair a Blackberry and in the middle of the pairing process the Sync system goes into “privacy mode” and appears to freeze the system.
First of all, always make sure the Wi-Fi connection is not in the ON setting on your phone. Turn this feature off for now because it will conflict with the Pairing process.
As an added precaution, pull the back off of the phone. Keep the battery out for about a minute and reinsert it. Place the back of the phone back on. Let the device power up. This process takes several minutes, but let the phone run through its start-up procedures.
Here’s a video on Blackberry issues which may help.
Go to your Settings folder on the Blackberry. Turn on Bluetooth. Go to your vehicle and turn it on. Push the Phone Icon on the steering wheel or on the dashboard. This activates the “Phone Menu” which in a few seconds may show the text “No Phone Found.” Then it might say, “Add Device.” Push the OK button on the dashboard or on the steering wheel. The voice will come over the vehicle sound system to say “Push the OK button to begin the pairing process.” Push the OK button. The voice will continue, “Enter the PIN number displayed on your device.” Since this is a Blackberry, turn the tuning knob on the dashboard until the LED display shows “Special PIN.” Push OK. It will show the number “0000.” If it doesn’t, turn the tuning knob until it shows a four-digit PIN, then press the OK button. Now go to your phone, set it to search for Bluetooth devices. In a few moments it will find devices, when the display shows “Sync” as a discovered device, then push the “Home” button on the Blackberry (it’s the main control button in the center). The device will show a secondary screen where you can enter the four-digit PIN. Then hit the OK button on the phone. Another screen appears with some questions. Scroll down and mark the button that asks if the Sync connection should always stay connected. Then scroll up and mark the button Yes for connecting to Sync. Then the dashboard screen and voice will lead you through some other prompts. Push OK for the question, “Set as Primary Phone?” Push OK for the question “Turn on 911 Assist?” Note, if you don’t, then the voice may come on every time you turn on the car. It will make the statement, “You are reminded that 911 Assist is set to off.” Then, Sync will ask the question, “Download Phone Book?” Press the OK button and let the Sync system take its time to download the contacts. When finished, the system will show “Download Complete.” You can push the Phone Icon for about five seconds and it will clear the screen. You are now ready to use your phone.
Push the “Voice” icon on the steering wheel (it’s the symbol that looks like a mouth with sound coming out). The Sync system will make a chime, and make the statement “Sync, state your command.” Then you can say “Phone.” It will repeat “Phone, state your command.” Then say “Call + (Name of your contact as you have saved it in your phone book).” Or, say “Dial” and Sync will prompt you with “”Number please…”
Here is another issue that may arise. Some phone carriers use “SIM” cards to store your phone numbers. If you have your contacts saved in the “SIM” card, then the Sync system will not be able to read this contact. The “SIM” card is a secure level not accessible by Sync. You would have to edit your contact and save the contact to the phone and not the “SIM” card. You may contact your carrier’s retail store and ask one of their staff to move your contacts from the “SIM” card to the phone’s memory. This will help Sync be able to identify your contacts.
Another phone book related issue… Don’t spell contact names in all capital letters. Use the person’s full name (first and last) or be creative… if you can’t remember your plumber’s name put his contact information as “Joe The Plumber.” Sync’s voice activation software works off of syllables and phonetics. So watch what the word really is. Let’s say your contact’s first name is “Nita” (short for Juanita). You may say her name as “Neeta.” However, the Sync system uses a computer-based system which assumes the letter “I” of “Nita” is pronounced like an “I” not an “E.” If you plan using Sync to call “Nita” then pronounce it as “Ny-ta.” Or, change you phone book spelling of her name to be “Neeta” and then you can pronounce the name as “Nee-ta.”
Also, watch all capital letter spellings of names. For example, to call “MOM” you would say to the Sync system, “call M-O-M.” Or, just edit your phone book and spell the name in capitals and lower case, or better yet, pub in a few more syllables. For example, change it to “World’s Best Mom” or “Mama Jones.”
Stay tuned to this blog for more workshops on handling issues, problems and situations with your Sync system. We’ve found in most cases it’s not the Sync system that is the issues, it’s the way the user is trying to use or access the system. So getting a good demonstration and a good education is the best way to master this system.
I work everyday as a technology consultant in an auto dealership to help vehicle owners who are wanting to get the most out of their in-vehicle technology. I am a former news reporter, graphic designer and photographer who has spent more than 9 years in the automotive industry learning about the developments and advancements. This blog is read by people around the world who want to become more “tech savvy” while enjoying their drive time to work, home, school and play.