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What Is Visual Voicemail?

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  • Written By: Lakshmi Sandhana
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Last Modified Date: 02 September 2016
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Visual voicemail allows users more control over how they access their voicemail messages, saving a great deal of time. Inbuilt in some mobile phones or provided as smartphone apps by third-party services, the feature enhances the voicemail experience with the aid of a visual interface. Users can easily see all the voicemails they have received and respond to them appropriately. Some even provide text-based transcripts of the voicemails by using voice recognition software to transcribe the audio.

In a typical scenario, a user accessing voicemail would first hear an automated message saying there are five voicemail messages. The messages would play out in sequence, and the user is given options after each one to either listen again, delete, or proceed to the next one. This is a time-consuming process because the user has no idea who has called and has to listen to each message to figure out whether it is relevant or not, going through all of them in the order the calls were received. The user may waste a lot of time listening to spam voicemail.

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With visual voicemail, things are extremely simplified. All the messages are displayed at a glance on the screen of the phone with a special menu. The menu allows users to pick the messages they want to listen to or read in a transcribed form first. They can manage, navigate, respond, and delete all their messages with the aid of the menu. The caller details, the duration of the call, and the time are also recorded, so it is easy to attend to the most urgent first or delete the spam without having to listen to it.

Users save a lot of time by using visual voicemail instead of retrieving it in the typical way. They can also upload messages to a server with the help of the visual interface. The user can reply to messages or create messages with text as well. Even if the caller's address isn't in the phone book, users can see the name and location of the caller who left a message.

Not only can the messages be played back in any order, it is possible to see an image of the sender if that contact already exists in the phone's contact list. Another advantage to using visual voicemail is the fact that it allows the user to save more messages than the traditional service. Visual voicemail makes managing voicemail a very user-friendly experience by giving users more than one way to interact with their messages. While a lot of phones still do not support visual voicemail, it is expected to become a standard feature over time.

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