Recording Cell Phone Voicemails

My girlfriend Clarissa asked me if it is possible to save a voicemail message that is stored by her mobile provider’s voicemail system. The short answer is no, but I figured I could do better.

Google released Google Voice which replaces GrandCentral. I went ahead and upgraded my GrandCentral account to a Google Voice account. It went smoothly, and now my Gmail account is integrated with my old GrandCentral account. I have my Google Voice account configured to ring my office phone, my mobile phone, and a Gizmo5 SIP account.

Back to saving a mobile voicemail message. Since it costs to dial out through Gizmo, I figured I could place the call through Google Voice and answer it with the Gizmo client on my laptop. Then I could use Gizmo to record the voice mail message and then send it to Clarissa. I entered her mobile number on Google Voice and hit dial. I answered it on the Gizmo client, but pressing # did not prompt me to enter her PIN to check her messages. When I tried doing the same thing on my office phone, it worked fine. After a bit of creative thinking, here is the solution that I came up with:

  1. Dial my Google Voice phone number on my office phone, and then answer the call in the Gizmo client.
  2. Start a new call on my office phone, and dial Clarissa’s mobile number.
  3. When Clarissa’s recorded greeting starts playing, hit #. When prompted for her PIN, enter her PIN.
  4. Conference the two calls together on my office phone, and mute myself on the office phone and in the Gizmo client.
  5. Hit record in the Gizmo client.
  6. When the message is done playing, hang up the conference call on my office phone, and hang up the call in the Gizmo client.
  7. Edit the recording to remove unnecessary audio from the beginning and end of the message.

There you have it, an elaborate solution to record voicemails stuck in your mobile voicemail inbox. I have been using YouMail to avoid this problem, and I plan on helping Clarissa switch to it soon.

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