Wednesday, August 19, 2009

YouMail...Free Pimped Out Voicemail!

You might have heard about the iPhone's visual voicemail feature, and thought, "hey, that's pretty cool," but never had any intention of purchasing an iPhone. Besides, if it is really that cool, something that like will start to be available for all kinds of phones, right?

Well, with YouMail's voicemail service, now it is! You have the option of either viewing your messages in a list via your web browser (at, or downloading their app (currently only available for Blackberry, Android, or iPhone). And of course, you can still call to check your messages.

So what else does YouMail have to offer? Here is a list of my favorite features:

-Smart Greeting: when people call you and reach your voicemail, YouMail scans your contact list for their number. If it finds it (or if there is Caller ID information available), then instead of the typical, "Amy is not available, please leave a message," YouMail will great your caller by name "Hello, John, Amy can't come to the phone right now, please leave a message." Of course, you have to be careful not store your boss in your contacts as "Butthead Boss."

-Personalized Greetings: this gives you the ability to have a greeting for each different person(s) who calls. I have one set for my sister, my husband, my mom, and my parents house. You could also do this in groups, like have a "professional" greeting for anyone calling from work, and a "funny" greeting for your old high school pals.

-Notifcations: You can set YouMail up to notify you of not only new voicemails, but missed calls as well. You can choose to have these sent via text, email, or both. This service is also combined with Caller ID information. This means that if you receive a call from a number you do not recognize, but instead of leaving a voicemail, they hangup, you may still be able to get the caller's info. This is also useful in case you have low-cell service, so your call goes straight to voicemail but a message is not left, you still get a notification.

-Transcriptions: YouMail can also transcribe what your callers are saying on your voicemail and send them to you via email or text. Unfortunately, this is not included in their free service. This service starts as low as $3.00/month.

-Call Ditching: Sick of your mother-in-law nagging? Avoiding your boss? Your ex does not know when to stop? With YouMail, you can ditch calls. Although this feature does not actually prevent the number from calling, they will be played a message about how their call is not wanted, and then will be hung up on after the message is played instead of being able to leave you a harassing message.

-Importing: Since a lot of the features rely on your contact list, YouMail makes it easy to import. You have the choice of uploading a file, or letting YouMail log into one of your email accounts like GMail or Yahoo and retrieve your contacts for you.

-Message Forwarding/Reply: I also like that you have the option to forward or reply to messages. You can do this to the recipients email address or text message. I like being able to type a quick reply, or when someone leaves me a hilarious voicemail I can forward it to our other friends.

So if any of this sounds interesting to you, sign-up! YouMail is available for most of the popular providers, and I have also heard that if you are having any trouble, their customer support department is very helpful!