Voice is also used to control the V1, and BlueGenie is capable of understanding a range of pre-instructed voice commands. For example, pressing the BlueAnt button and saying "check battery" will have BlueGenie reply with the remaining battery levels, and pressing the same button and saying "voicemail" will dial the speed dial setting number 1 on your phone which is usually set to dial voicemail numbers by default. If you forget which commands you can use, saying "What can I say?" will have BlueGenie recite the available commands.
The BlueAnt V1 gets the big thumbs up all round from us. Using the voice commands is easy and accurate. The V1 we reviewed featured an Australian voice and recognised our accent flawlessly. The system is very user friendly and reasonably powerful, once you've personalised it. The unit accesses your phone's preset speed-dialling options, so once you've set up your nine most frequently dialled numbers, calling them is as simple as making your demands into the microphone.
Call quality was excellent during our tests. We reviewed the V1 side-by-side with the Sony Ericsson HBH-PV740 and the V1 came out a clear winner. We called the same people to test our connections and everyone agreed that the audio during calls was louder and with less distortion.
The V1 is a solid unit that does the basics well, but it's the V1's BlueGenie voice interface that has really won us over. BlueAnt has stripped out something that frustrates us about Bluetooth headsets and replaced it with an ingenious system. Using the V1 is so easy and the performance is so good that we're more than willing to overlook the parts of the headset's design we don't love as much. Voice commands make the V1 an excellent choice for people who use their hands-free headsets while driving.