GotVoice: Visual Voicemail isn’t Perfect, But it’s Good Enough

If you use an iPhone, you’re already familiar with being able to see your voicemail messages on your phone and sort quickly through to the ones you want to hear right away. Especially, if you get a lot of voice messages, it’s a time-saver. I’m already a fan of Pinger, which gives you similar service free of charge that doesn’t require an iPhone, and recently I’ve been experimenting with the free service from GotVoice.

GotVoice has both a free service and a premium service. The main attractions are having your voicemail messages converted to MP3s or text and available on your phone. The premium service, for $10 a month, checks your voicemail every 30 minutes and converts your voicemail messages to text.

One of the main reasons I started using Pinger was that you can broadcast messages to multiple people, and GotVoice lets you broadcast as well. My only complaint in trying out the free service was that messages sometimes showed up a couple of hours after they came in, but for the most part they showed up promptly. Transcription accuracy wasn’t perfect, but it never is, and it is good enough to let you evaluate whether you want to listen to a message in its entirety. If you start using the service a lot, I would recommend paying the $10 monthly for the premium service.

I liked the fact that GotVoice can save your messages indefinitely, and you can also use contact filters so only your most important messages get transcribed. GotVoice also has a blog where you can see example applications for the service, and there is a professional service available with extra features for small business users.

GotVoice works seamlessly with Sprint/Nextel, and is very easy to get up to speed with. As is the case with all of the visual voicemail offerings, the real utility of the service depends on how bombarded you are with voicemail messages. If you get a lot of them, though, being able to avoid listening to all your messages in linear form saves lots of time.

Do you use visual voicemail or any other useful mobile phone applications?