Glossary Of Voicemail Terms
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A Glossary of Voicemail Terms and Definitions – Definition Notification

You probably have voicemail. Most people do. Most businesses do. Some systems are quite simple. Some are more complicated. But no matter which category they come in, they have attached to them a list of terms, some of which can be confusing. So we’re presenting this glossary of voicemail terms and definitions to sort out your confusion. Pay attention, and you’ll end up an educated person, well-versed in the terminology of voicemail.

  • Audiotext
    Audiotext is a pre-recorded message heard by system users.
  • Automated attendant
    The automated attendant is the computerized replacement for a human operator that answers and directs calls by playing greetings and responding to touchtones.
  • Call blocking
    Call blocking, when activated, automatically sends callers to voicemail and gives them the option of leaving a message.
  • Call processing
    Call processing is the technology whereby telephone and computer systems work together to handle incoming calls, including receiving the call, transferring it to the proper extension and/or taking a voice message.
  • Call queing
    Call queing is a process that, when an extension is busy, gives callers the option to hold, leave a message, or try another extension.
  • Call screening
    Call screening asks the caller for a name before forwarding the call to you. When you answer, the system announces you have a caller waiting and plays the name left by the caller. You then have the option of taking the call or not.
  • Computer telephone integration (CTI)
    Computer telephone integration (CTI) connects a computer to a phone system and lets the computer take control of the commands.
  • ESP (enhanced services platform)
    ESP (enhanced services platform) enables network service providers to offer enhanced services, such as voicemail, unified messaging and personal assistants.
  • Integrated messaging
    Integrated messaging is a communications system that delivers all voice, fax and email messages into a single inbox.
  • Interactive voice response (IVR)
    Interactive voice response (IVR) is a voice processing system that allows callers to input unique identifying data, either by pressing certain digits on the touchtone phone or via speech recognition, and the system responds with the requested information. e.g. telephone banking.
  • Live connect
    Live connect, also referred to as “follow me” or “find me”, helps a caller reach you by calling your home, office, cellphone or any other number you specify, and connect you with the caller. While the system is trying to find you, the caller listens to your selected hold music. When you’re found, depending on your personal setup, the caller’s name will be announced and you can choose to talk to them or send them to voicemail.
  • Prompts
    Prompts are prerecorded messages or instructions in a voice messaging system that guide the caller through the system, e.g. “You may dial “0” at any time to reach an operator”.
  • Speech recognition
    Speech recognition allows a voice messaging application to understand human speech and transfer it into digital or analog signals.
  • Toll saver
    Toll saver is an option that lets you know, when you call to retrieve you messages, and hear two rings, that there are no messages. If you hang up right away, there are no toll charges.
  • Unified messaging
    Unified messaging and unified messaging services, provide a single point of access for all messages, including voice, email and fax communications.
  • Voicemail
    Voicemail is a message that’s left in the caller’s own voice and is retrieved by the user at their convenience from any touchtone phone.

So there you have it – short, but to-the-point. Most of these terms apply to business, but since most of us are involved in business throughout a lot of our lives, at some point we’ll probably need to know them. So remember the terms and, one day, you can surprise your friends and associates with your knowledge – because now, you’re a voicemail expert. And now, if you’re done, you can just hang up!

About The Author

Gareth Marples is a successful freelance writer providing tips and advice for consumers purchasing toll free voice mail, as well as free cellular & mobile phones and voice message systems & software. His numerous articles offer moneysaving tips and valuable insight on typically confusing topics.

This "Glossary of Voicemail Terms & Definitions" reprinted with permission.

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