SpinVox is a service that automatically converts incoming voicemails to text messages and delivers them to your handset. It's an interesting Web service that I've spent the evening testing. It's not very transparent about the payment plan for the different elements of the service (so keep an eye on your phone bill) but at least the first week is a free trial and certainly worth a go.
After a signing-up process that will leave some people confused, you select which of the different services you would like to use. In addition to the voicemail to sms text service, you can also opt to phone your blog, update your facebook status or twitter over the phone. You receive a unique phone number for each of these services which you can store and access as easy as calling Mum.
It worked pretty well in my trial, I called over a dozen times and spoke in various accents (it only recognises English, but not Yorkshirish) and I even mumbled at times. I'd give it 8 out of 10 for voice recognition (particulary when you consider that it is over a phone line) compared with 9 out of 10 for the Dragon Naturally Speaking desktop software which is also lots of fun to use - in a Trekkie sort of way!
For the most part Spinvox recognised the general gist of what I was saying, although missing out the odd verb can completely change the meaning of your message so be careful when calling the girlfriend... "Of course your bum did _ look big in that dress last night"
- Paul Williams