Ed Biebel: ‘I have the same voice mail problem that you described Friday. Although I use Cingular for my provider, I decided to try ‘337’ just to see what would happen. It worked! You have saved me countless hours spooling through long messages to get to the one I need.’Steve Gilbert: ‘Using 337 to skip and delete a message works on Sprint PCS, too.’

Sandra Wilde: ‘This also works on my home phone voicemail from Qwest.’

Eric Batson: ‘You are probably on a standard Octel system. They are the market leader. Some more detail: 1 goes back 10 seconds, 11 goes back to the start of a message . . . 3 skips forward 10 sec, 33 goes to the end of a message . . . 4 slows down playback, 6 speeds it up, and every time you press those it goes even slower or faster. These are very cool. The longwinded guy… just hit him with 6 twice…. then when that crucial call back number zips by, hit 1 to rewind, then 444 and he says it slowly while you write it down.’

☞ The only thing more amazing than how great this is is that AT&T’s ‘quick reference card’ doesn’t say a word about it.

Jonathan Hochman: ‘These controls work on most voicemail systems, even though they are not always revealed in the instructions. Undocumented software features are sometimes called Easter Eggs. Most software has some. You can search at Yahoo for pages about Easter Eggs and your favorite software. Here’s an example for excel.


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