A collection of rambling posts about gaming, running, and politics. (and, in 2009, photography.)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Message Skipped

I gotta share this.

We have a salesperson up in the northeast who has a blackberry cell phone, as well as an IP phone in his home office. The IP phone is connected back to our main company phone switch, and behaves pretty much as though it was any other normal phone at our company.

Note that he has voicemail both on his IP phone and on his cell phone. This is important later.

Because he travels a lot, we have setup the voicemail on his IP phone so that if he receives a message, it will call his cell phone. It goes something like this:
Joe leaves a message on Salesguy's IP phone.
Salesguy's cell phone rings.
Salesguy answers and hears "This is the phone system calling, if you are Salesguy, please press pound to continue."
Salesguy hits pound, the system asks for his password, and then he can listen to Joe's message.

Well, Salesguy told me some time ago that its not working right. He can't get the messages. On further investigation, he says that when he's prompted to hit #, he does so, and hears "Message skipped", and never gets the voicemail message.

Huh. Weird. So I got my hands on his phone and tested it myself. I called and left a voicemail on his IP phone. His cell phone rang, I heard the voicemail system, pressed # when directed, and it worked like a charm. No problem.

I chalked it up to user error.

Well, he tells me that he is STILL having the problem. So I make a note to get with him when he's down next and sort it out.

Today, I get this email:

"My cell phone said I have 7 messages. The first one didn't prompt me to press pound if I was the correct person and just played my voice mail. The other 6 messages all prompted me to press pound and when I did, it announced that message as having been skipped. The same was true for all six messages."


I got it.

In case that is still mysterious to you, let me analogize it. You pick up the phone and call your friend Dave. You get Dave on the phone and say "Hey man, do you want to run to the comic shop with me?" Dave says "yes", and you go pick him up, and off to the comic shop you both go.


You pick up the phone and call your friend Dave. You get Dave's answering machine, and you say "Hey, just wanted to see if you wanted to run to the comic shop with me." When Dave checks his answering machine later, he hears your message. To which, for some reason, Dave answers by saying into the phone "yes", which obviously you cannot hear, because Dave is talking to his answering machine.


So what was happening was that he was getting voicemail on his IP phone. The phone system was calling his cell phone, but when he didn't answer or was out of the service area, it ended up in his voicemail, where it recorded a message asking him to press #. Which he did. Which the cell phone voicemail did not understand.

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