[UK] HulloMail, the visual voicemail provider, recently released its dedicated app for the iPhone, available in the UK and US-only. The app brings the complete HulloMail visual voicemail feature set to the device, most of which is fairly redundant for iPhone owners whose networks already support Apple’s own visual voicemail implementation.
(Orange UK, which recently began selling the iPhone, currently doesn’t, something that HulloMail is obviously keen to point out.)
Where things get a little more interesting, however, is that the app also offers the ability to record and send audio messages to other HulloMail users or to any email address via a the phone’s data plan, therefore bypassing the operators own voice carriage.
Not only is this another example of a future where voice is just another form of data but it puts HulloMail on a trajectory where it could begin to compete with ‘phonecasting’ service iPadio and, to a lesser extent, the more high profile AudioBoo.
Along with the newly introduced two-way audio messaging capability, which enables users to send and return quick voice messages, called ‘Hullos’, asynchronously (similar to email), the company says it is currently doing trials with local businesses and universities to explore the potential of broadcasting to “a community of people.”
This doesn’t sound dissimilar to the way iPadio, for example, is being used by Telco Virgin Media to disseminate information to its field workers.
In other words, HulloMail could soon evolve from its latest consumer proposition – the company’s legacy is in selling its voicemail system to service providers – to targeting the corporate sector. That would also fit nicely with its BlackBerry app, which will add audio messaging in the coming weeks, as will HulloMail’s Android client.