Most cars on the road today come equipped with some sort of voice-activated navigation system. However, after the promotional period, those services usually require a fee for continued use – as is the case with our vehicle’s current subscription. Most of the time we don’t use the navigation seeing as I tend to drive within my 2 mile bubble. Given this, the fact that it had lapsed wouldn’t normally be a big deal but with an upcoming weekend getaway road trip to Paso Robles during rush hour on a Friday? Gah! While we can still use our car’s built in navigation system, it no longer incorporates up to the minute traffic info – a veritable necessity during rush hour or, who are we kidding, ANY TIME you drive in Los Angeles!
It was the perfect opportunity to try out our new smart car accessory, the Logitech ZeroTouch smart car phone holder. This little gem utilizes an extremely useful voice-command app to give you many features of a connected car, right through your smartphone.
Setting it up and usage is easy as 1,2,3:
- Install the ZeroTouch App on your Android advice
- ‘Snap’ your phone onto the magnetic car phone holder
- Wave your hand to initiate the app and say a command
The first, most obvious, use for our road trip was the navigation system. You can pre-set destinations and start navigation with your voice. The app works with popular navigation apps like Google Maps™ and my personal favorite, Waze™.
With the app you can also place calls easily with voice-activated calling, send messages with voice to text, reply to incoming messages, control music, navigate or share your location — all without ever touching your phone. Perhaps best of all is that it also works with Facebook Messenger, Google Hangouts™, and WhatsApp℠, unlike S Voice or Siri, who only work with their text native messaging apps. An app that’s even smarter than my smartphone?! #Winning.
A lot of times I’ll use S Voice or the cars system to text while I drive. While safer than traditional texting, it’s clunky and inefficient. I often spend more time giving directions to the car than actually messaging back and forth. So the natural language feature of the Logitech ZeroTouch was much appreciated. You can speak freely instead of with e-nun-ci-a-ted syllables, with no training needed. Even better, conversation mode lets you text back and forth without a ton of extra steps, which is great when an impatient 7 year old decided to check in on Mom and Dad….17 times.
It was the first time a new text message arrived that I fell in love with Logitech Zerotouch. Well, first it scared the bejesus out of me, and then when I realized what was going on. “Whistler says ‘Hi Mommy, where are you?’ Would you like to reply?”, I trepidatiously responded with “Yes” and said, “We are driving – we love you buddy!” I was surprised when the app perfectly confirmed my message and how easy it was to go back and forth.
And if we’re being honest here, I’ve always had an awful relationship with the Android keyboard on my phone. The autocorrect drives me nuts and I’m constantly having to retype correct words 3 or 4 times before it will allow me to actually type what I want to say (yes, it autocorrects correct words into completely irrelevant different ones). So I’m not going to lie. I use the air vent mount in the car and the dashboard mount – well on my desk. I love being able to respond to text and Facebook messaging via voice, without ever switching screens or missing a beat while I work. (I’ll bet they didn’t think I’d use it like this!)
I was provided product for purposes of this review. All opinions remain my own.