I just heard about a feature I wasn’t using with Google Voice. Now I can get voicemails made to my non-Google Voice number transcribed and texted and/or emailed to me! To most of us, this is the biggest benefit of switching to GV, but you don’t have to give up your mobile number to get this benefit.
If you have a GV (Google Voice) number and use that number exclusively, i.e. discarded your original cell phone number, then you have all the benefits of Google Voice. I’ve had a Google Voice number for a year or so, but haven’t moved over completely to Google Voice. I do give out my GV number to new contacts because of the greater flexibility for handling calls, and of course, the message transcription/texting/email service. Even though transcription isn’t perfect, it’s enough to figure out what the message is about. If the message is garbled, at least you’ll have the caller’s number.
So, if you haven’t activated this feature yet, here’s how:
- after logging into your GV account, go to the ‘Settings’ drop down and select ‘Voice’
- You’ll see the ‘Phones’ tab comes up – look at the ‘Forwards to’ section and you’ll want to click on ‘Activate Google voicemail on this phone’
- You’ll get a pop-up ‘Voicemail setup’. Here’s where you enter in the symbols/numbers exactly as given & press send
- If all goes well, you’ll get a confirmation message. Mine said ‘Registration of all conditional call forwarding returned success’
- That’s it – you’re activated
Then I tested it by calling my cell provider number, left a message and got a text with the transcribed message – cool.
Since that didn’t take very long, while you’re in your Google Voice settings, take a look at some other things you can tweak…
- record or re-record your greeting or your name
- check on where your voicemail notifications are going and update, if necessary