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>Next stop Ireland

July 19, 2010 Leave a comment

>Top o’the morning to ya!
Late last week testing began of HulloMail in Ireland.  We have managed to recruit a band of testers in the Republic who have kindly agreed to be our ‘guinea pigs’ in market.  We have given this intrepid group access to the Android and BlackBerry apps with iPhone to follow this week, so they can put the service through it’s paces.
You have probably noticed that we have amended the HulloMail website recently to incorporate Ireland so all the details are there for when we launch the service shortly.
The Hullo Family are getting excited about filming their summer special in Dublin which will be available for launch, so watch this space.

You may ask why Ireland and not another country? Here at HulloMail we get regular requests to expand our service into new territories so that other countries can enjoy the benefits of HulloMail, particularly where operators don’t support visual voicemail on any phones.
The decision was made to launch in Ireland first because we have strong links with the country and the potential user base is considerable.
When the service goes live in the coming weeks it will be available to all Irish BlackBerry, Android and iPhone users regardless of which operator they’re with as all will be supported.  Unfortunately users on a pay as you go tariff will still not be able to use the service unless their operator supports unconditional diverts.
We will let you know how testing goes, but all is looking good so far. 


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>The Future of Voicemail – sponsored by HulloMail

>

As posted by Ewan this morning, the Future of Voicemail Video Series is coming soon to Mobile Industry Review, which HulloMail are happy to sponsor.
Ewan approached us about the series, as he had for a long time been pondering the possibilities of the medium of voicemail, which he felt had been over looked for years.  We all rely on it daily and according to a recent article in The Times, us Brits alone spend more than 25 billion minutes each year leaving or listening to voicemail.  Which begs the question why do so many of us put up with the archaic service we’ve had for years.
This question and more we will aim to answer through the upcoming Future of Voicemail Video Series.
The format will be this: Ewan will be interviewing five leading minds in the mobile and technology field on camera over the next few weeks. He’ll be asking them to comment on the history of the industry, the technology in use today and to speculate on what they see as the next steps for the medium. We’re aiming for one video each week, starting in the next few weeks.

If you’ve any questions, drop Ewan a note: ewan@mobileindustryreview.com.
Watch this space for some behind the scenes exclusive insights.

>Swine Flu? No, Feature-itis!

February 23, 2010 Leave a comment

>

Last week I attended a planning meeting, where I heard the term Feature-itis!  Not something you hear every day however it sparked a thought, could feature-itis indeed be the disease that culls numerous technology start-ups every year?

What’s Feature-itis?
Feature-itis is a disease that’s rife in technology start-ups, symptoms begin at an early stage and can be difficult to diagnose until it’s too late.  Many start-ups, in my experience, seem to begin around the idea/vision/capability of one person, this in itself is not a bad thing. We only need to think about the multi-million dollar empires built around Richard Branson’s and Sir Alan Sugar’s ideas and vision, for example.  However the problem starts when this vision does not follow the basic marketing principle of creating and delivering goods and services that meet and exceed the needs and wants of the consumer.  Creating a particularly acute case of Feature-itis as it means you are creating, building and deploying features, and in some cases products, that no clear demand has been established for.  

One of the first symptoms is when you hear phrases like ‘we can create/build/deliver that feature, so we should someone will want it, I would!”  These words are enough to strike fear straight to the heart of any crusader against this pandemic as it means the occurrence of a nasty symptom, that of ‘direction infection’, where the suffers lose direction in what they are building and who their target audience is. Recovery is possible although rare.


Is there a cure?
The good news is feature-itis is treatable with the right marketing intervention, although the path to recovery can be a rough one.  It’s critical that the marketing influence in these start-up organisations realises the symptoms of Feature-itis and intervenes quickly to avoid further infection.  
The development of new products/services/features needs to be assessed not only in terms of internal capability but also, and in some cases more importantly, in terms of end-user demand and established behaviours.

Critically, the question needs to be asked ‘does this development fit/compliment the organisation’s core proposition?’ if the answer to this question is No or at best maybe then market analysis should be conducted immediately and processes need to be developed to make sure a consumer/market need is identified before the product/feature is completed and presented to marketing to do something with. 

Prognosis

Even though the future for a start-up with Feature-itis is not always bright and can lead, at worst, ‘direction infection’, this is not always the case.  There are some instances were innovation has been disruptive enough to change behaviour, we only have to look at cases such as the iPhone, Twitter, MySpace etc.  Twitter and MySpace are especially good examples as they did not have the large brand backing that the iPhone did.  There is no doubt that there are exceptions to the rule, as with everything, however in order to avoid a Feature-itis outbreak in your start-up business you need to stock up on marketing expertise and vitamin C!



>Comments from around the Web

February 4, 2010 2 comments

>We are really pleased, as people seem to be getting as excited about our service as we are, with this is mind we thought we would put together some of the great comments and reviews we have had about the service over recent months, enjoy!

I just got done setting up Hullomail and surprisingly I like this app A LOT. Very easy to set up, very good graphics and shows a picture next to whoever left you a voice mail or a missed call and very fast at receiving voice mails unlike VVM from Verizon which sometimes took an Hour to come through!” – mjbesen310, CrackBerry Forums

“Hullomail is really good…even sends you an email with a link to listen to your voicemail as an mp3. Definitely recommend to anyone […]”- luckster28, Vodafone Forums


The service is called Hullomail and it has been invaluable.  It is a free of charge mobile service which enables recordings of voice mails to be emailed to my gmail or mobileme account. One of the best features is the ability to send a Hullo (voice mail) directly back to a person without having to phone them (Great just to reply to a question that needs more explaining than a txt). If you […] want visual voice mail download the app and register for the service.” Kristian Toms


Some app store reviews:


“Just wanted to say thanks for making a brilliant app – I wasn’t getting any voicemail alerts through Vodafone and unbeknown to me I had 4 voicemail – one of them very important. HulloMail! works just great and I left a post on the Vodafone eForum to advise people how good it is.” – Chris, HulloMail user


I just used your website steps to install hullomail onto my iphone 3gs. Simple, accurate, quick, easy – free. Well structured and thought out, pretty and it works superbly, quickly, no fuss. Great app and service thank you– Neil, HulloMail user


I have a BBTour and was disappointed it did not have visual voicemail…..Until I found this app. Its fabulous! It was a piece of cake to install and set up – I love it. A definite must have.” – BlackBerry user


“Miffed you don’t have visual voicemail on your iPhone? Get this. The email sync feature is great too – you receive an email with the voicemail message attached as a quicktime MP3 and, when you have read it, the corresponding message in the voicemail app is marked as read too. Don’t know what it’s like when roaming although they seem to have made provision for this.” jtorange, iPhone user


“Allows me to manage my voicemails with ease, brillant!” yppirtos, iPhone user


Brilliant! I went from PhoneFusion to this as this one has push voicemail and displays them in my notification bar. This certainly rivals the iPhone.” Glenn, Android user


why not see if you agree with these reviews and try the service for yourself?


Download HulloMail for BlackBerry


Download HulloMail for iPhone


also available for the Android


>HulloMail’s iPhone app adds ‘free’ audio messaging to its visual voicemail service

January 13, 2010 Leave a comment

>We believe that one of the features of our new iPhone application, which we are also bringing to our BlackBerry and Android apps in the coming weeks, is where the interesting story begins.

This is the Hullo feature.  This allows users to create and send voicemails for free but without the initial call.  These Hullos can be sent to an individual or to groups.  
There are many benefits to this type of communication such as:-
– Quick communication without the need to text 
– Users can hear the tone of someones voice which is missed in text communication which often leads to mis-intrepretation
– You don’t need to worry about your spelling!
– Free of charge as uses data
– International – a user in the UK can send a Hullo to someone in the US free of charge
– Broadcast to a community of people. We are beginning trials with local business and universities, watch this space for the first case studies.
– Hullos are a safer option to receive while on the move as you can’t read a text while driving
and the list goes on…..
As you can see we believe the service we offer is much more than a Visual Voicemail iPhone app and think the news is in the development of this feature which will allow users to communicate in a new way for free.  The guys at Tech Crunch obviously agree, check out their latest article.
We have filmed some videos of the application in action, click here
If you have an iPhone why not try the app for yourself, click here
We are looking for you special, funniest Hullos.  The best ones we will publish on our own website (www.hullomail.com) as an example to others, make them good…
Send your Hullos to +447545620266 or to hulloandy@hullomail.com



>Google Voice – You can’t use it for voice mail but if you do it seems they own it?

March 27, 2009 Leave a comment

>I saw this tweet last week
twitter.com/ClaxtonLegal – “@SandraSingerEsq I read that Google’s TOS indicates that they own all info, including the voicemail they change into emails/SMS. Not sure”

I thought I would check it out….

http://www.google.com/voice/about
Clicked on Terms of Service -> Error Page Not found

hmm I thought that strange – so I googled https://www.google.com/voice/help/terms and brought up the cached page (great feature Google)

I had a quick look at their terms. Under Rules and Regulations:
Subscriber agrees to abide by all applicable local, state, national, foreign and international laws and regulations and is solely responsible for all acts or omissions that occur under Subscriber’s account or password, including the content of Subscriber’s transmissions through the Service. By way of example, and not as a limitation, Subscriber agrees not to:

* Use the Service in connection with chain letters, junk email, voice mail, faxes, spamming or any duplicative or unsolicited messages…

UPDATE: do they own it? Answer is no! under help/legal notices….

New Tweet says…
@tazmaniax RT @BryanGriffith: Google specifically disclaims ownership of message content. https://www.google.com/voice/help/legalnotices #GoogleVoice

Your Intellectual Property Rights

Google does not claim any ownership in any of the content that you or your callers upload, transmit or store in your Google Voice account. We will not use any of your content for any purpose except to provide you with the Service.

Voicemail that’s yours to keep! too…