Monday, November 02, 2009

Sprint rumored to be offering free call forwarding on all their plans...

Reposted from what I wrote yesterday on

Sprint There has been a rumor circulating that Sprint will begin offering unlimited conditional call forwarding (meaning forward when no answer or busy) on Nov. 8th.
Until now Sprint has charged 20 cents a minute for forwarding any kind of calls, which has made alternative Voice Mail systems such as Google Voice impractical.
In fact, according to an anonymous source, Google Voice is the very reason for this policy change: Sprint has decided to create some sort of working agreement with Google to offer their enhanced Voice Mail service (visual voice mail, messages sent as email attachments, transcribed messages so you can read them like a text message, etc) instead of the boring old call-to-listen voice mail system most of us have been stuck with.
I didn't post this right away because I was skeptical at first. With all the policies Sprint has been tightening lately, adding a new service for free on every plan (not just their new "Everything Plans") didn't seem too likely. However, a recent update on the official Google Voice webpage has confirmed the following:
Starting mid-November 2009, Sprint is enabling free conditional call forwarding on its network, allowing you to use Google voicemail with your Sprint phone number. (Standard charges will continue to apply for immediate call forwarding.)

Sounds pretty legit to me.
The potential uses for this go far beyond Google Voice, however. In poor reception areas, or at home/work you can have your Sprint number forward to your landline or even a VOIP line when you don't answer, and save yourself from using minutes. In fact, technically, if you've got a VOIP app on your smartphone, you can forward the call and then receive it using data instead of minutes... I actually experimented with this concept on T-Mobile a couple of years ago, and you can read more about that here.
How will you use YOUR free forwarding calls?