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Would you like your voicemail messages to flash across your screen as text messages?

L.N. Revathy

CAN you recall the days when you had just started using your mobile phone? Did you shun taking calls while on the move or in noisy bars or clubs, where it would have been near impossible to access voicemails standing next to the speaker stack?

How did you manage? Voicemail obviously helped you retrieve messages. But come to think of it, you will realise how much time you wasted in remembering to dial-in and listen to each one, then remember to control playback, delete, next, and other basic functions.

If only these messages could be converted to text and delivered to your palm-held device or mobile phone... A mobile service that handily converts all your voicemails to text, which can then be sent to your mobile or e-mail account.

It's imagination no longer.Though this service is available only in Britain for the present, it should not be long before it comes here.

The UK-based SpinVox, a company in the mobile telecom business, seeks to make this possible - by using the latest technology to convert standard voicemail into accurate and discreet text messages.

With SpinVox, you don't have to do any dialling. You can have all your voicemail delivered to your mobile phone as text. Just switch on your cell and lo! the messages are on your screen.

Open your mailbox and there you will find the same message on your PC/laptop or any device with Net access.

This gives you the ability to save e-mails and even print them out, making voicemail management easier than having to frantically scrawl everything down when you're checking your messages.

Now suppose you are on a foreign tour or are out of bound of phone coverage, with SpinVox, you can access your mail to get the messages.

SpinVox is not the only one. DictoMail is another company offering a similar service. But then, you pay for such service.

What's more, if you are plagued by rambling, inconsequential calls from friends or family, SpinVox will gently remind them to be more precise.

Try for starters or

It's like SMS but faster, because people call you instead of writing you an SMS message and then you read what they said.. just like an SMS message.

It goes beyond SMS, because (unlike SMS) you can forward the translated message to many e-mail addresses.

Furthermore, you receive translated messages just like you receive SMS messages, but you can also receive messages on your desktop and webmail and not just your cell-phone.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated May 2, 2005)
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