Best Visual Voicemail Apps of 2020

Have your voicemail transcribed and delivered to your inbox

If you get a lot of voicemails, use a visual voicemail app to transcribe incoming voicemail messages. A transcript makes it easy to read a message so you can decide what to do with it. Voicemail transcription is convenient, as you can choose voicemails rather than hearing messages one after another. It's also appealing from a privacy perspective. You can discreetly glance at a voicemail transcription rather than listen to the message.

Here are some of the best visual voicemail apps for iPhone and Android.

Person on a smartphone.
PhotoAlto / Getty Images
01
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The Best Visual Voicemail App for Access on Any Device: YouMail

YouMail app.
What We Like
  • Access YouMail on any device; perfect if you multitask with several devices.

  • Huge range of features beyond visual voicemail.

  • Call protection to block out spammers.

What We Don't Like
  • Ads on the free tier plan. 

  • Has only monthly subscription rates on upgraded accounts.

YouMail is an award-winning visual voicemail app for iPhone and Android that lets you see who left a message. You can view the transcription from your phone, tablet, or computer, browsing transcripts in the order you prefer. You can also have YouMail convert voicemails to email and text message format.

Much like a Swiss Army Knife, YouMail has a surprisingly massive variety of optional features, like robocall blocking, personalized voicemail greetings, and conference calling. YouMail is free to download, but some features require a paid subscription plan.

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The Best Free Visual Voicemail App: Google Voice

Google Voice.
What We Like
  • Free and easy to set up, particularly if you have a Google account.

  • Supports voicemail transcriptions in Spanish.

What We Don't Like
  • Can use an existing phone number to receive voicemail transcriptions, but the default is to set up a new one.

  • Charges $10 to change a Google Voice number.

Google Voice has offered visual voicemail for longer than most of the competition. Before Google acquired Google Voice, it was known as Grand Central. Whether you use iPhone or Android, Google Voice is the best free visual voicemail app out there today.

Google Voice gives you a dedicated, free phone number you can set to ring or not ring on any device you choose. When a new voicemail message arrives, Google Voice sends a transcription right away by email, text, or both.

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The Best Visual Voicemail App for Heavy Voicemail Transcription Users: HulloMail

HulloMail.
What We Like
  • Store voicemail transcriptions and search through the transcripts.

  • Block unwanted callers.

  • Assign individual greetings for different callers.

What We Don't Like
  • Was a free visual voicemail app, but now the Lite version requires a modest monthly subscription fee.

  • Only comes with a 2-week trial.

HulloMail is another terrific visual voicemail app available for iPhone and Android users. You can use it to easily scan the voicemail messages in your voicemail inbox, then read the transcriptions and decide how you want to follow up. Should you wish, you can send copies of the transcriptions through email.

If you want unlimited cloud storage for your transcriptions, or the ability to search through transcripts to find a specific message, you may want to level up to a paid subscription plan.

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The Best Visual Voicemail App for One-Stop Shopping: InstaVoice

InstaVoice.
What We Like
  • Configure visual voicemail for up to ten phone numbers.

  • Access and handle voicemail in one place.

  • The customer support line can help you quickly troubleshoot problems.

What We Don't Like
  • InstaVoice isn't as fully-featured as some of its competitors.

InstaVoice provides visual voicemail transcription, but with a twist. It aims to provide a single interface to manage an unlimited number of voice messages from every phone number you want. If you get a ton of voicemail messages on a regular basis, to the point that people tell you they got the dreaded "the mailbox is full" message when calling you, this is the app for you.

In addition to accessing voice to text transcriptions on the spot, you can also reply to voicemail messages using a chat-like interface within InstaVoice, allowing you to call or text the person who called you. It's a great way to maintain a large volume of voicemails across multiple phone numbers, handling them with the same speed and efficiency you would a text message or email.

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The Best No-Fuss Voicemail Transcription: Your Carrier's Visual Voicemail

Zoomed in image of a voicemail indicator light.

Travis Zimmerman / Pixabay

What We Like
  • When visual voicemail comes with your carrier's service, you can access robust technical support for it anytime.

What We Don't Like
  • It often comes with an additional monthly service fee, so you may want to compare its costs with the above apps.

Most carriers offer visual voicemail, so it's definitely worth checking with your carrier to find out how to access voicemail-to-text services on your phone. If you don't want to mess around with third-party apps or pay for an additional software package, this is a solid option to explore.