OK I just received an invitation to Google Voice and set it up. I’ve only played with it for a few seconds but it’s fucking awesome. For those of you who haven’t heard of it Google Voice is a service (invitation only at the moment sadly) where you receive a phone number from Google (you can select the number you want from a desired area code). You then enter in your phone numbers. When somebody dials your Google Voice number their service attempts to contact you by ringing all of your phones sequentially.
But the coolest part so far is if you can’t be contacted the caller is prompted to leave a voice mail. Google Voice then transcribes the voice mail to text and does two things. First is sends you an e-mail containing the transcribed message and it sends you a text message with the first part of the transcribed message. This means you don’t have to listen to the voice mail and honestly the transcription service is pretty bloody good.
It also allows you to send free text messages to people. Granted that isn’t much of a win for me since I have unlimited text messages on my plan, but still cool none the less.
Google once again surprises me with their cool services that don’t end up costing no money. I guess they do get free advertising from me via this post in the process to boot but really I don’t reach enough people for them to care.