Jott it Down [ARTICLE]
When you think of a brilliant idea or simply a task you need to tend to, it’s not always easy to jot down a reminder on a piece of paper.
That’s the driving idea behind Jott, Inc. – a mobile messaging service that enables you to call a number and leave a voicemail message which is then transcribed into an email or text message to be sent to anyone in the world.
Need to remember a phone number? Call Jott to have the number emailed to yourself. Have a great idea for your latest project at work? Call Jott and record all the details, before they’re forgotten for good.
Free and Easy
Founded in April 2006, Jott is a free service that works by having customers create an account – a two-minute process that requires only your name, email address and phone number – and then calling a phone number to leave their message.
Each message is immediately transcribed and sent to a text message or email account the customer chooses. You can set up numerous recipient addresses in your account, and even create group addresses for mass messaging.
The service has proved to be invaluable to an ever-growing number of Jott customers, from busy moms and dads coordinating hectic family schedules to ad executives recording their creative ideas whenever inspiration strikes.
“We have people who do follow-ups to sales meetings, those who recite poetry, doctors and lawyers who Jott messages about cases they’re working on, and people in Hollywood reeling off ideas for movies. We have a group of people who use Jott to talk about changes that need to happen in scripts,” said John Pollard, Jott co-founder and CEO.
Jott customers typically fall into one of two categories, he said: busy parents who spend a lot of time in the car, and hardcore mobile professionals who rely on mobility and fast-paced communication for success on the job.
For many, the messaging service makes life a lot easier. Pollard knows one woman who uses Jott to coordinate the home healthcare for her aging mother. “She uses Jott to message between five different caregivers to ensure that her mom is being taken care of at any given time,” he said.
Plus, leaving a voicemail message is relatively safer than typing in a text message while driving, something busy people often do.
Millions of Jotts
While he won’t give specific numbers, Pollard said Jott has transcribed “millions and millions” of messages so far. Changes are in the works to further enhance the service, including a new level of service which will require a fee. Some version of Jott will always be free, said Pollard.
The company takes great strides to ensure security for its customers, he said. Jott transcribers never see a customer’s identity or account information when transcribing messages. Employees undergo background checks and work with security cameras in a “clean desk” environment that makes it impossible to write down or record information for personal use.
In setting up their accounts, customers can choose not to have messages transcribed and rather rely on the audio link that accompanies all Jott messages.
“The idea behind the audio link goes back to when we first started Jott,” said Pollard. “We wanted to offer people the simplest way of hearing a message that may have been difficult to transcribe, regardless of their email client or whether they are getting the message as an email or text.”
In addition to sending messages, Jott customers can also use a number of Jott Links that connect them to other web services like Google Calendar and Amazon. After adding the links to your account simply call the Jott number, say the name of the Jott Link, and leave your message. You can quickly and easily add items to your Google Calendar or check the prices and availability of an item at amazon.com, among other link services.
“Ultimately these links were designed so that when you are on-the-go you can still send all the information you need to update a calendar or friends, or pull all the information you need from places like Amazon. We currently have 28 Jott Links available and that number is always growing,” said Pollard.
The Jott CEO hopes to continue enhancing Jott services to meet the demands of a fast-paced society.
“All in all people are massively time-constrained and feel overwhelmed,” he said. “We thought we could help them by allowing them to offload ideas and use technology to remember things and save ideas. The applications are bounded only by people’s imaginations.”