Visual Voicemail – Untangling a Web of Messages

SpiderwebSometimes we are on another line, out of the office, or just plain have to send a particular caller to voicemail, it happens. Heck, even Gwen Stefani has been walking into spiderwebs, so leave a message and she’ll call you back. What, then, are you to do if you didn’t have time to take a call but need to quickly check and see what the message was about? Visual Voicemail is the quick way to do just that.

Visual Voicemail refers to both voice-to-text transcription of voice messages to be delivered to you via text or email, and it also refers to archiving voicemail into more easily managed interfaces. Both are, of course, great improvements over the tape-recorded messages of yesteryear, though.

Today, there are a host of ways that you can get even more out of your voicemail by making it easier to collect, scan, and listen to your messages. Two apps in particular that are worth checking out are briefly reviewed below-

HulloMail – Get your voicemails converted into audio files to be delivered to your email or access them from the HulloMail web portal, dictate messages from your phone or the same web access, and even designate personal greetings for each of your contacts along with a lot more. This app is great for two reasons, first being that the basic version (which is still rather robust) is free. The second reason is that there is a business subscription that gets you access to additional options (including the voice transcription of voicemails themselves) plus unlimited cloud-based storage.

Google Voice – This service from the online giant is really compelling for folks who don’t mind turning their contact lists over to the mothership. The fact that Google offers voice to text transcription free of charge has been enough for many people to stick with the reliable service. However, in spite of the intelligent and progressively accurate voice recognition software that Google Voice uses, this author must suffer a terrible case of mush mouth because transcriptions of my messages are nothing short of hilarious.

In addition to going with a third-party app, there are options for visual voicemail available through most major mobile service providers, too. T-Mobile and Sprint have basic services similar to what is available with the free version of HulloMail as part of their basic array of features. Verizon offers actual transcription for a $2.99/month premium and you can get similar service from AT&T, but only on their Android phones. Of course, there is also a variety of ways to get voicemail messages through VoIP service, too.

For more on modern voicemail features, you may want to check out the following reads:

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