For some people, wading through voicemail messages is a challenge. Besides the slow process of listening to them, it’s sometimes hard to decide what to save, and sometimes you want information in that voicemail but don’t have the ability to transcribe it immediately.
SpinVox is a service which takes voicemail messages and turns them into SMS messages sent right to your mobile device. No more waiting through several messages just to hear the one you’re waiting for, and no more trying to remember that number left on your voicemail –all of that is transcribed as a text message and ready to be used and archived.
I don’t usually think of performance when a service like this is considered, but there is something to be said for immediately getting notification that a person called you via a text message rather than a voicemail alert.
It is interesting though, much like the Visual Voicemail systems that the iPhone and BlackBerry Storm users get to use. I get messages (usually two per call) and can just read and note things as necessary. It’s simple.
And for messages that I want to actually hear — because sometimes the transcription is not so well done — I can just call the SpinVox number that came alongside the message to hear it.
Oddly enough, I have had some issues where it seemed that some messages took longer much than others to get to me. There was one day where I got about 10 messages all at once at the end of the day, and I had never received any prior notice on my mobile of these calls. Could be network related, but has happened on and off.
Other Features: I have only looked at the voicemail portion of the SpinVox service, there’s also Memo, Blog, Text Blast, Social Networking, and Messaging. These other components have the same deal — voice and text meet at a singular communication point: the mobile device.
The folks at SpinVox offer some solid customer service. Being on the other side of the pond from their home operations (UK), I thought that I’d suffer delays getting questions answered, but everything was done quickly and efficiently.
Setup: Setting up SpinVox is pretty simple. First, you register on the website (US and UK residents only for now). You then get a SpinVox phone number and PIN number. Dial in from your registered mobile number to setup voicemail, and use the PDF that comes to your registered email address to configure the voicemail and other settings on your mobile (I have a Nokia N95 that I setup SpinVox on; my settings saved to a SIM card and worked easily in other mobiles).
After that, just wait for the calls to come in and the voicemails to — somewhat — end.
This is one of the better mobile services that I have played with. Besides finally enabling me to keep up with all those that call me, I can at least be held accountable for those voicemails that fall to the back of the line.
SpinVox is available in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. The voicemail service is available from mobile carriers or directly from the developer for $5-$10 . The pricing is determined by region and carrier rules. All other services, including SpinVox Memo, Blog, and Ping.fm are available free of charge.
For more information about SpinVox, including its recently released API, visit the SpinVox website.