More and more business professionals rely on e-mail to deliver their messages. There's no official study that I know of, but I'll bet the majority of voice messages consist of "Call me back" with a phone number, as opposed to anything of great detail. E-mail, on the other hand, is the ideal way to leave details. You need only a phone to check your voice mail, however; you need the phone plus access to a computer to check e-mail.
With Email Reader, from Millennia Software, all you need to retrieve e-mail when you're away from the office is an ordinary phone. Just dial your computer's number and speak. The computer talks back and reads your e-mail aloud!
This is the road warrior's dream come true. No more having to lug around a portable computer just to access e-mail.
Email Reader is software that works with any of the newer TAPI-compliant voice modems, including models available from U.S. Robotics, Diamond Multimedia and Creative Labs.
Also required is a 75 megahertz or faster Pentium PC running Windows 95. No other specialized hardware is required.
After you phone your computer and hear its welcome message, you navigate through your e-mail via spoken commands, including "retrieve new mail," "first message," "last message," "previous messages" and "play message."
Say "What was that?" and the computer repeats the last-spoken item. "List messages" causes it to read the subject line of each e-mail. "Mark read" flags the ones you don't wish to hear again.
If you're in a noisy area, you can issue commands via TouchTone keys.
Email Reader is compatible with Netscape, Eudora, other POP3 Internet mail and Microsoft Exchange mail. At $89.95, it's available from: Millennia Software, (888) 362-4573 or (408) 867-8900; http://www.msw.com.
Craig Crossman is a columnist for The Miami Herald. Write him at Business Monday, 1 Herald Plaza, Miami, Fla. 33132. Please include your phone number.
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