I Heart Google Voice.
One of the most important features to me is the combination of cell-phone simul-ring and the after-hours “work-life balance” feature… Using those features I can both stay uber-connected with my office and cell phone during the work-week but have calls routed to voice mail after hours and weekends. In addition, I can set up my key clients to ring through at extended hours if I wish. It rocks, and I can tell you that there are no other small-office solutions which do it as well. I’ve looked.
But the geek in me finds fault….I want a different schedule for my cell phone CALLS and SMS messages….
Here’s the facts…
- I want to get SMS messages all the time, but want to route voice calls to voicemail after hours (they are transcribed and emailed to me)
- Google requires you to use the same schedule for call routing as SMS routing as of this writing (ug!)
- I don’t read email all the time on my phone after hours. SMS messages generally need a rapid reply, so forwarding to email introduces a long delay (asynchronous.)
- Google’s SMS Email Notification feature does not let you choose the destination email address (ug!)
So here’s a work-around that works around these issues and forwards along your SMS messages to the phone as SMS after hours by routing them through email (hey, that sounds like a Dilbert line!)
- Determine the email address for your cell phone*.
- Using Google Voice’s SMS forwarding feature, forward your SMS messages to your primary email address.
- In your primary email address settings, set up a forwarding rule that sends messages to your your cell-phone SMS-email address, if they are from “@txt.voice.google.com”
- Voila!! Google Voice SMS messages forwarded as SMS, even after hours, while calls follow the Google Voice Rules.
ps: yes, this costs standard SMS rates.
Limitations of the Idea
What about replies? Nope. This method doesn’t let you reply DIRECTLY to the SMS, however , most smartphones let you click on the phone number (included in the Google SMS message) and call or text it. It works great on the iphone. This is a minor hassle IMO.
Desktop Email Program Users
If you’re using Outlook or other program that is unreliable in forwarding email, you may want to set this forwarding rule up on a Gmail address – just set up two filters to forward your messages… one to forward to your phone, and one to forward to your regular email address.
What’s Your Cell/SMS Email Address?
*Not sure of your email-SMS address, here’s a list for most carriers, just put your 10-digit number (without the “1”) in front of the “@” sign.