NEW YORK - Verizon residential customers in the mid-Atlantic states and parts of New England can now capture in a single mailbox all their voice messages from their home number and up to four additional wireline or wireless phones -- and even have Verizon's intelligent network notify them when new messages arrive.
"This is the ultimate in being five places at once," said Susan Revelle, product manager for Verizon. "Each line feeds into the mailbox, and when a new message arrives, you can get a text message on your Verizon Wireless phone, a pager notification, or the system will ring another phone and offer you easy access to the new message with just a quick password entry. Staying connected doesn't get any easier than that."
The service, OnePoint Voice Mail, includes other voice mail features like expanded greeting length and message storage, reminders, wake-up calls, separate passcode-protected individual mailboxes for family members, and messaging to other Verizon mailbox customers. With mailbox messaging, users can record and send a message any time, day or night, without ringing the recipient's telephone. Users can also use group lists to send a message simultaneously to multiple recipients - great for coaches, youth organization leaders and the school PTA.
To have calls to additional phone lines answered by OnePoint Voice Mail, those lines are simply forwarded to the single mailbox when they are busy or unanswered.
OnePoint Voice Mail is being introduced in West Virginia, Virginia, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Customers with Verizon Freedom, Freedom Extra and the very popular Freedom Essentials calling plans can have the new service as part of their plan at no additional charge.
For customers who don't have a qualifying voice plan, OnePoint Voice Mail has a set-up fee in some areas and will cost $8 a month plus the monthly cost of call forwarding. Any additional numbers sharing the mailbox must also have a call-forwarding arrangement; monthly, usage, and set-up fees may apply and vary by carrier and location. There is no charge for the call-forwarding feature on Verizon Wireless phones in qualifying plans; however, airtime minutes apply for calls forwarded to the OnePoint Voice Mail service.
"About a fifth of our residential customers use network-based voice mail because of its reliability and convenience," Revelle said. "We think the added features and simplicity of the converged mailbox will be attractive to modern families and people who are on the go. This is a lot more versatile and helpful than an answering machine."
According to Revelle, Verizon's messaging products are often chosen because they reside in Verizon's reliable network, which works even when the lights go out. Messaging systems continue to function, and messages are saved and can be retrieved from a working line or wireless phone.
"Our ads remind our customers that 'It's the Network' that differentiates Verizon," Revelle said, noting that Verizon is the only company of its kind building an all-fiber network to deliver all-digital broadband and entertainment services straight into customers' homes. "It's also the network that allows us to offer a feature-rich, unified mailbox," she said.
The service is available by contacting Verizon representatives at the number on customer bills.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving 60.7 million customers nationwide. Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network. A Dow 30 company, Verizon has a diverse workforce of more than 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.