Skype users can have their voice mail messages delivered to their e-mail and SMS addresses starting Monday through a voice-mail-to-text service offered by SimulScribe.
Utilizing its proprietary voice-recognition algorithms that transcribe voice mail to text, the service works with wireless, networked, and voice-over-IP services, SimulScribe says, adding that the feature typically can save a user three hours a month in wasted time that would be spent listening to voice mail.
"Carriers are already set up to provide" the service, says David Gerzof, SimulScribe's chief marketing officer. "We don't need to do deals with carriers." Gerzof cites a typical application in which a businessperson attending a meeting couldn't answer a phone, but would be able to read incoming calls via e-mail or SMS without interrupting the meeting.
The system's transcription accuracy is more than 90%, and text messages are delivered in "near real time" with the caller's phone number in the subject line, Gerzof says. The transcribed voice message is held in the e-mail body, while the original audio is contained in an attached .wav file.
The technology was developed by SimulScribe in 2003 and operates with many carriers and operators, according to James Siminoff, founder and CEO of the company. "Combining SimulScribe with a Skype account benefits everyone, especially people doing business on eBay," Siminoff said in a statement. Skype is owned by eBay.
The company offers several pricing options for the service, Gerzof says. The starter plan is $10 a month for 50 messages. Other plans cover unlimited messages and are aimed at enterprise customers.