Your mobile phone voice mail is no longer restricted to living--and expiring--on your phone system. New services let you listen to or read your voice mail on your PC. CallWave Mobile Visual Voicemail is a free service that sends your cell phone voice mails to your e-mail and notifies you with a detailed SMS. You can then listen to, save or delete at will. CallWave is compatible with most carriers and is also available as a widget. Setup is fast and painless, and audio quality is as clear as with regular voice mail.
Two companies taking a slightly different approach are SpinVox and SimulScribe. Already well-established in the United Kingdom, SpinVox's Real Visual Voicemail service has recently come to the U.S. It uses speech-to-text technology to send your voice mails to you as e-mails or text messages. SimulScribe delivers transcriptions of voice mails to your mobile phone, PDA or e-mail account. The company's basic plan includes 40 messages and costs $9.95 per month. The text conversion systems will appeal to users who need to blaze through a high volume of voice mails without listening to each message completely.