September 5, 2012
No More Voicemail? No One Wants To Leave A Message Anymore
Derek Walter for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online
The death knell may soon be ringing for voicemail.
According to a report that Vonage prepared for USA Today, the number of voicemail messages left was down eight percent in July from one year ago. The popularity of texting, caller ID, and instant messaging services are making the practice of leaving a message after the tone obsolete.
Michael Tempora, a senior vice president of product management for Vonage, told USA Today the annoying prompts frustrate callers.
"They hate the whole voicemail introduction, prompts, having to listen to them in chronological order,” he said.
While the iPhone´s visual voicemail simplifies this process significantly, clearly many users would much rather look at the missed call log and return a call instead of listening to a message.
Some other popular mobile tools could be playing a role in bringing about the end of voicemail. Google Voice transcribes one´s voicemail (admittedly with mixed success) allowing it to be read instead of listened to. Also, the newest version of Android includes the capability to create a quick text-response to a caller if you are unavailable.
Another cross-platform messaging platform is WhatsApp, which is frequently at the top of the paid charts in the App Store and Google Play. Users can exchange messages free of charge across devices without incurring any SMS fees.
While it is fading, BlackBerry enthusiasts also have BlackBerry Messenger, which provides instant messaging amongst BlackBerry phones.
Also, caller ID is having an impact, according to the study. Many phone users are likely to ignore listening to the message altogether and return a phone call based on the caller ID; especially if it is a regular contact, family member, or friend. Given that iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and other mobile operating systems make calling back far less taps on the screen than listening to the voicemail, it would not be surprising if this trend were to continue.