GrandCentral, maybe cruiser cool

Yesterday David Pogue of the New York Times wrote a pretty glowing review of a new Web-centered phone and voice mail management service called GrandCentral. The central idea is one single phone number for life, and the central technology seems to be some slick switching software that can, for instance, ring either or both of my physical phones instantly if, say, I want to initiate a call from my GrandCentral voice mail box (which imported a big Outlook contact list flawlessly), or decide to record a custom greeting for that test Call Me button up there.
  So, yeah I spent some time signing up for a free GrandCentral account and testing some of its many features, and I too am pretty blown away.

 If it was a few years ago when I set up my business number or if I was moving aboard a cruising boat with numerous possible voice comms—and if I was confident that GrandCentral will make it well past beta—I’d switch to a GrandCentral number. But there are also numerous uses for it as is, like letting Panbo readers leave me a voice mail. Go on, try it! (Note that the connecting, not the call, is free; you’ll be dialing a Manhattan, NY, number, and your own number will remain private, or not, as you choose).

PS 3/17: Thanks for the test calls! GC works like a charm; you leave a message, I get an email with a link (or could get a text message on my cell). All messages are neatly presented in my inbox (below); I can even download them as MP3 files. For instance, here’s Milt Baker’s MP3 (Milt, by the way, is itching for some dialog in this radar thread), and here’s
Vincent Paquet, one of GrandCentral’s founders, who somehow found this Panbo (Google Alert?) and called to say the “Call Me!” feature above is indeed free. How cool is that? Actually I have a vision of ultimate cool: Google or Verizon or someone buys GrandCentral and makes it possible for me to apply all its phone management goodness to my long-held existing phone numbers! Here’s hoping.


PS 3/18: Geez, I just noticed that GC also provides a bit of code so you can paste a particular voice mail right into a Web page:

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

1 Response

  1. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Well, wow, I wish there’d been some way to bet on my prediction/hope. Yesterday it was announced that Google has purchased GrandCentral! I continue to think that this service could be really useful to far cruising liveaboards (with numerous possible forms of phone connections), and I’ll bet that Google will make that even more true.

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