Tips and Trouble Shooting




Speaker verification technology, while not perfect, is perfectly adequate for convenient everyday use. Observing the following guidelines will help you get the most out of your FREEKEY®.

FREEKEY® allows you to create your own personal biometric key using the phrase of your choice.  Choosing a "strong" phrase is important for FREEKEY® to operate as expected.  Although a "weak" phrase can be used, it may make it easier for someone else to operate FREEKEY®.  Speaker verification relies on differences in the unique vocal patterns of an individual.  A longer phrase with more words will perform better and be more accurately than a simple phrase or a phrase with only a few words.


Quick Tips for Training


  • Always train new phrases in as quiet an environment as possible outdoors to reduce or eliminate echoes and background noise.

  • Speak in a calm, relaxed manner as close as possible to the microphone when enrolling. This allows FREEKEY® to respond in noisy conditions when spoken to closely, and out to a range of about arms-length when conditions are quiet.

  • Choose a "strong" phrase with no unnatural pauses between words that you can easily remember and repeat in a consistent manner (see "Choosing a Phrase" below).

  • When using the WAKE feature (see user guide for details), start speaking immediately after the indicator light comes on. If you start speaking too soon or too late, your input could be cut off at the beginning or contain background noise at the start of your phrase which can affect performance of FREEKEY® .  If a failure occurs or background noise is being rejected, the light will briefly go out and come on again.  Be sure to speak your phrase immediately after the light comes back on for best results.

  • In areas of high background noise, you can minimize errors by speaking closer to the microphone. FREEKEY® will adjust the input volume to attempt to minimize background noise.  It may take one or two retries to allow the input volume to adjust properly up or down as needed when FREEKEY® is used in both high noise and quiet environments.

  • If a phrase that was working normally becomes difficult to use due to changes in your weight, age, etc. or where there are differences in the background noise of the location where you use it frequently, you may choose to update your phrase to include these changes, thus restoring accuracy (see "Updating Your Phrase" below).

  • When updating it is important not to allow someone else to attempt to "crack" your phrase since FREEKEY® is VERY forgiving during updates and may allow impostors to verify and be updated into your stored phrase.


Choosing a Phrase

  • Using a short phrase or simple phrase may allow others to impersonate you if they know your chosen phrase.

  • Using a longer or more complicated phrase will make it more difficult or impossible for others to operate FREEKEY®.

  • You should try to choose a phase with as many words as possible that is approximately 2 seconds in length.

  • When beginning to use FREEKEY® try to choose a phrase that is easily repeatable while speaking in a calm and relaxed manner.

  • As you become more proficient you can try longer more complex phrases but you must be able to repeat them consistently.


A good place to start is by using phrases that include digits such as your phone number, or important dates.  We have tested and found that these are very easy to repeat consistently. Other good starting phrases are things you repeat to people frequently such as your email address or your street address.


Examples of "strong" phrases are:


Phone number: (212) 937-2547
Spoken quickly as "two-one-two-nine-three-seven-two-five-four-seven" with no unnatural pauses between words. This phrase is approximately 2 seconds in length with 10 words.


Important date: July 4, 1776

Spoken quickly as "seven-four-seventeen-seventy-six" with no unnatural pauses between words.  Speaking this as "seven-four-seventy-six" would make it easier for someone that knows your phrase to operate the device.


Email address:

Spoken quickly as "Someone at Austec Electronics dot com" with no unnatural pauses between words.


Street address: 12345 Test Ave.

Spoken quickly as "one-two-three-four-five Test Avenue" with no unnatural pauses between words.


Sometimes your personal information will be too short to adequately reject others speaking your phrase and prevent them from using FREEKEY®.  Try to make the phrase as complex as possible without limiting the ability for you to repeat it consistently.


Examples of "weak" phrases are:

Phone number: 666-1111

Spoken quickly as "six-six-six-one-one-one-one".

This phrase is too short and simple.  Including the area code would help to vary the sounds and improve performance.


Important date: January 1, 2010

Spoken quickly as "one-one-ten".

This phrase is also too short and simple.  Speaking it differently would produce a "stronger" phrase.
For example, speaking this date as "January first two-thousand-ten" would be a much better alternative.


Changing The FREEKEY® Security Level

FREEKEY® allows you to adjust the accuracy from within the ADMIN menu (see user guide for details). By changing the security level you can make FREEKEY® more or less forgiving for all users.  If you change the security level to "HIGH" and can no longer operate FREEKEY® with your chosen phrase, you can update your phrase to be more accurate (see "Updating Your Phrase" below).  If after updating you still cannot repeat your phrase consistently enough to operate FREEKEY® in higher security mode, you can use the update feature to allow you to verify at a lower security level temporarily so you can access the ADMIN menu and change the security level to a lower setting.


Updating Your Phrase

Occasionally, for various reasons, your phrases may "drift" away from your normal speaking voice over time.  This is normal and is usually due to factors such as weight gain or aging that changes the biometric patterns of your voice. To update your stored phrase to fix accuracy problems that are NOT due to excessive background noise, simply wake FREEKEY® with the User Button instead of using the audio wakeup feature. FREEKEY® will reduce the security level by one (unless it is already set to "LOW") to allow an update. FREEKEY® stores several versions of your phrase, so the update will replace one of these with the newly verified phrase.