After I wrote about six ways to make voicemail better, David Gerzof from PhoneTag reached out to me and offered to let me try their service. All in all, I was impressed with their voicemail service from registration, setup and delivery of their service. I’ll share some bits on what really impressed me.
One of the biggest challenges in checking voicemail is the overhead of checking voicemail such as entering the pin, hearing the timestamps, navigating between voicemails, etc. PhoneTag addresses this obstacle by transcribing audible voicemails into text and delivers it to the account holder in the form of e-mail or MMS.
The registration process was simple; simply requiring the user to enter their name, phone number, carrier and PIN. The process is painless, which is good for new-comers looking to try out a voicemail service.
Following registration, the Web site guides you into setting up your phone so it works. I was shocked at how easy PhoneTag was setup. I use Verizon for my cell phone, I just selected Verizon as a carrier, and it provided me the code to enter into the phone, and it was setup instantly. None of that navigating menus, accessing the internals of the phone — just simple and easy to use. I set it up in no more than 20 seconds.
I want to point out, that other traditional voicemail services require the end-user to modify settings of their cell phone in order for it to work. PhoneTag gets big kudos in this respect.
The delivery of their services was top-notch. The transcription of the voice messages are flawless, and accounted for possible errors and communicated that clearly below the transcription. Also, the messages are available online for on-demand playback if I don’t want to use a phone. Pictured below is a screenshot of the dashboard with a test message I made:
PhoneTag Dashboard: Click to view larger.
Areas to Improve
Very rarely, a service is truly perfect; nonetheless, PhoneTag meets a lot of my needs. In the future, I’d like to be able to see phone numbers of who called me, not just names. I suspect they are using classic Caller ID for identification, which I’d like to see true ANIs of calls that make it into their system. I think it would be interesting to have PhoneTag support Instant Message notification of new calls besides e-mail. I’m willing to wager that anyone who gets a lot of voicemail also gets a lot of e-mail and callers are back to square one — waiting in line for the person to return their call.
David was kind enough to let me share to my readers a free 30-day trial of their service, instead of the typical 7-day preview period offered on their Web site. Definitely try it out if you want to be more productive when checking your voicemail.
[Disclosure: I’m wrote this review independently; however, PhoneTag did provide an account for me to use. The complimentary account has no influence in the editorial process of this entry.]