1. Andrew10562's Avatar
    I'm an Android convert that had been using Windows Smartphones since the old Windows Mobile days. I finally ditched my Lumia 640 last week because the app gap was actually getting worse with developers abandoning the Windows platform in droves. I'm now the owner of an ASUS Zenfone 3 Laser with Marshmallow. I'm generally pleased with the phone and of course app support is fantastic but theres one glaring omission in my mind. There is no native hansdfree SMS support.

    Since MSFT released Windows Phone 8 with Cortana, all Windows phones have had native handsfree SMS. You are driving in your car, you get a text message. Over the vehicle's integrated Bluetooth system Cortana would ask if you wanted her to read your text (and interrupt any audio that was playing and lower the climate systems fan speed if necessary). If you replied with "yes" she would read the message and then ask if you wanted to reply. If you said "yes" you could dictate your response to her and then send it. All of this was 100% handsfree and all of it over Bluetooth, just like a phone call.

    In 2017 this seems like pretty rudimentary functionality but to my utter shock, Android has no such native functionality. Now in my research so far, Android Auto allows for handsfree functionality while driving but both of the flavors of AA have less than ideal implementations. Here are my issues:

    1) Integrated Android Auto using vehicle's Infotainment system.
    I drive a Cadillac XT5 which allows for AA to take over my vehicle's infotainment system as long as the phone is plugged in. There are two things that I dislike about this. First, AA literally takes over the entire screen. Theres no way to tune my car's radio or use the onscreen climate controls when AA is running. Also, there's a limitation on scrolling long lists such as music collections which in my mind is crippling. Using a thumb drive of music with my car's built in music player has no such scrolling limitation.

    2) Android Auto app on phone screen.
    So recently Android enhanced the AA app to allow for the same functionality on the previous iterations of the software only now it doesn't require your vehicle to have built in support, you can just use the app on your phone. It's a nice idea but as far as I can tell it does NOT work over the car's Bluetooth mic / speaker. This means that if there's any ambient sound from say music playing in the car or from the vehicle's climate control fans you may not hear the text dictation and / or your phone will have trouble detecting your speech.

    At this point I can't believe that a modern Android phone doesn't have something that my $50 Lumia phone had natively. I'm willing to use an app to obtain this functionality if I can find one that works seamlessly but so far I can't find one.

    So am I missing something with the AA app? Or is there another app I can use instead?

    Any suggestions on a solution for this would be appreciated !!
    02-20-2017 08:50 AM
  2. Bleser's Avatar
    Did you find any solutions to this? I was under the impression that Cortana for Android would have this functionality but I've never tried it (I have an Android phone now but still haven't swapped my SIM as I just don't want to give up some of the features like this). It is a feature I use with W10M on a daily basis and it will be very limting to use it.
    02-28-2017 11:40 AM
  3. Bleser's Avatar
    Based on this thread, there is no solution that I know of beyond going back to WP, which I just might do given this severe limitation.
    02-28-2017 11:50 AM
  4. TheMightyTM's Avatar
    I came here to ask the same question... It's 8 months since this post, so... any updates? I'm a happy 950 XL user, but obviously I'll likely have to come back to Android after 5 years due to MS abandoning the platform. Voice messaging over car bluetooth is currently a deal-breaker for me. The Cortana / WinPhone implementation is fantastic. I've popped a PAYG SIM in my Elephone P9000 to tinker with, but I've not been able to get anything close to this.
    10-16-2017 09:23 AM

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