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IVR - How Much Would You Pay to Avoid Voice Mail Drivel?
May 26, 2011

How Much Would You Pay to Avoid Voice Mail Drivel?

By David Sims, TMCnet Contributing Editor

The New York Times’ David Pogue -- oh to be able to sign a Christmas card “From The Pogues” -- might be a bit fond of voice-mail-to-text services, we really can’t tell, his comments on it are so... ambiguous. Let us know what you think, which side of the fence he comes down on:

“I am a huge raging fan of voice-mail-to-text services. They let you get your voice-mail messages as e-mail, as cellphone text messages... Text can be copied, pasted, forwarded, archived and searched. You can read much faster than you can listen. You can read them in any order.”

What do you think?

Hey we see his point. According to a recent study from Yap (News - Alert) referenced in a paper titled “Pricing Your Voicemail-to-Text Service,” Americans spend more than one billion hours annually “recording, managing and listening to voice messages.” And 876,923,551 minutes of that is “uh, um, hey, you know, I was thinking, and... um... well, let me run something by you, this came to me when I was waiting in line at the Chinese place, you know the one by Sutton Place... (inexplicable pause, background traffic noise)... great moo goo gai pan. Yeah, as I was saying, I was thinking, now feel free to say no... (muffled side conversation)... oh hey I’m just rambling here, sorry about that, I hate it when people do that, it’s so obnoxious, I’ll get to the point...”

Voice mail to text lets you skip over the garbage in a fraction of the time it takes you to plough through the drivel of voice mails. And Americans are willing to pay to avoid it -- 41 percent of smartphone owners would pay $1.99 and 19 percent would pay $2.99 for voice mail to text. Feature phone owners aren’t so willing.

“While the study did not explicitly test the $0.99 per month price point, it is quite plausible that the majority of smartphone users (and perhaps the majority of feature phone users as well) would be willing to pay $0.99 per month,” the study points out.

Of course, as the paper points out, most people simply expect it will be provided free at some point -- hello Google (News - Alert) Voice -- so why pay?

David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Juliana Kenny

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