Almost every carrier on earth (including t-mobile that RW resells) allows customer to disable voicemail – but every time someone request it if RW (me included) they receive a nonsense response, such as: nor enough people have requested it, it really isn’t necessary, or use this work around… Disabling voicemail is not rocket science — JUST DO IT
For what it’s worth, Republic doesn’t merely resell the networks of its’ cellular partners. Rather it blends the network of one of those cellular partners with the Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) carrier network of Bandwidth.com. VoIP is the technology powering the WiFi portion of Republic’s blended service.
Consequently, voicemail is hosted by neither of Republic’s cellular partners. Whether either of those partners offers the ability to disable voicemail is irrelevant.
The above said, Republic certainly could offer the capability to disable voicemail. Is there indeed sufficient demand to make doing so a priority for development? I don’t know the answer to that question but shouting seems unlikely (to me) to make it a reality.
I do know that Republic adds value to their resale of t-mobile services, and that they do an excellent job with WiFi integration… that said, as an EE w/ significant software expertise, disabling voicemail is not rocket science, and that “they should just do it,” rather than make excuses for not doing it. I can further add, from personal experience, that nothing (shouting included) will move them from their foolish stance on the subject – you should know that better than most, because you have been supporting them (and doing a good job) for a long time.
I hope you won’t find this to be a nonsense response.
I’m sure, despite your encouragement that we “just do it,” you’d agree that there’s more to disabling voicemail than simply pushing a button.
Typically for additional features, there’s a progression. The developers first make it possible and only they can make the change until they build out the tool to make it something our support agents can configure in our back-end account management system. Then there’s process, policy and procedure training for the agents who would have access to those tools. (Imagine the trouble we’d cause if one of them turned off voicemail for someone who complained about spam voicemail, thinking, “this will help,” and caused the member to then miss a really important message.) The next stage of development involves building the tool into the members’ account portal or the RW app interface, something that requires the cooperation of several teams. (Development, UI, app, user testing, documentation).
So, yes, for us to implement a new feature, we do require that there be significant demand. We can’t chase the wind and engage our engineers, train our staff, redesign our app and account portal, and write documentation for every individual request that comes along. Anytime I bring a request like this to the table, the first question I’m asked is, “what’s the impact?”
Let me tell you, it’s not a table where I want the next sound coming from my mouth to be, “Uhhhhhhh. Dunno.”
That’s not unique to our company. Just last week we opened a business to business support ticket with an app developer because we’re seeing an increase in the number of requests we get for the app to work with our service, and the incompatibility is on the app’s side of things, not ours. Their immediate response was, “what’s the impact? How many requests do you get?”
I’m not saying all this to put you aside, but to hopefully explain why it hasn’t been done before now, and what we need in order to make it happen.
So, this is where our Community can help. We need responses here saying, “I want to disable my voicemail.” Let’s see a show of hands, who really wants to disable their voicemail?
In addition to monitoring this thread, I’ll research our support tickets early next week and see how many requests we get there, and I’ll ask our social media team for a measure of impact from their view. I’ll let you know what I find, and we’ll see what we can do.
I would like to point out the fact that providing users with the option to disable voicemail has not caused chaos and confusion for all the other carriers providing it, and most do,
as I said earlier: It is certainly not a big engineering project — but, go ask your engineer(s).
Additionally, I have, prior to this posting, researched the web and RW — and can say that that you DO have a lot of customers who are unhappy and dissatisfied because of your rigid inflexible voicemail system — but apparently an insufficient number to motivate anyone to just do it, rather than explain why it can’t be done…
I am confused by your reply, as I neither suggested it would cause chaos, nor said it couldn’t be done.
I outlined what is required of me as I try to bring the request to development and assured you I would take those steps.
I for one have no desire to disable voicemail and no desire for Republic to spend its scarce resources figuring out how to do it.
If you are the same person on Reddit with this request. Are you simply trying to make Google Voice’s voicemail forward work? If that is the case, we can help you with this. Many of us use GV every day and have no issues getting calls to their voicemail. We can help with the issue.
No, the issue is not getting GV forward to work – the issue is using multiple phones, one Project Fi and a second phone with another carrier (the second phone is actually my primary phone). The other carrier cannot be Republic because its voicemail picks-up before Google Voice, so the message is always on the Republic phone, and not on GV voicemail (which all my other devices would be able to access). The solution, which would enable use of the Republic phone, would be to disable its voicemail, or extend the time until Republic voicemail picks-up – but neither of these things are possible with Republic. These options are, however, available on almost every other carrier – so, although I would prefer to use RW, I am currently using t-mobile with their voicemail disabled.
You don’t need to disable voicemail, you just need to use voicemail forwarding to forward the call to your Google Voice/Project Fi voicemail when you don’t answer. I have multiple phones that ring with my Project Fi number and it works great. See:
Unfortunately, its not that simple – the obvious work-around is not a work-around because doing that forwards everything to GV, including calls made to the Republic number, which I can’t allow. This is why the simple solution is to disable Republic’s voicemail. Creating, documenting, and supporting a voicemail system is major task – but once done, allowing a customer to opt-out of using it should be trivial…
You realize it would only forward when going to voicemail, not calls you pick up? Your call would go to Republic number, then if you do not answer or ignore it, the call would skip our voicemail and go to the number you entered to fwd it to.
a simple workaround for this would be to get a dummy google account and set up a Google Voice on this dummy account and forward the voicemail to the Google Voice number ( this can be access from anywhere)
the dummy account is need because Google Voice numbers don’r seam to be able to coexist with Google FI on the same account
This was one of the first things I tried – unfortunately, Google does not allow a Project Fi number to be forwarded to ANY Google Voice account / number – but thanks for the suggestion
Yes I do – unfortunately, I have frequently have to totally-silence my phone, and then calls to the Republic number don’t get answered, and would pass through to the (non-private) GV voicemail. My best solution is no Republic voicemail, so people who call me at that number would have to call back.
I really do appreciate the time and effort the people at Republic have spent trying to help solve my problem, that’s why I really do believe (an tell everyone) that Republic is a great company and it’s the reason I was trying to convince you guys to allow customers to opt-out of using your voicemail – because I want to return, even though my t-mobile plan (with their voicemail disabled) is working perfectly.
Since not an option why not record a voicemail greeting stating calls will not be returned and to please call back? You can simply ignore your RW WM if you desire to do so.
Thanks for the input:
It’s not a solution because my GV forwards to that same number, and they would get the same greeting, and not leave a message – but I want the GV people to leave a message. Believe me, I thought this problem through, and tried a lot of different things… the only flawless solutions are to either disable Republic voicemail, or extend the delay before it answers, so GV voicemail picks-up first for GV callers – but neither are possible.
Have you checked the suggestion/think tank area to see if this has been submitted before?
I can personally see a benefit to having the option to disable voicemail if a simple toggle were available in the RW app. Estimate 90% of VMs received over the 4 years with RW have been unsolicited and a waste of my time going through to delete.
Hi, Southpaw. Please count me as one vote for having a checkbox or something in the RW app on my phone that, when toggled, would disable or enable voicemail whenever I want.
My employer has provided a separate phone and carrier for business use, so my problem has been “solved.” I now use Republic Wireless exclusively as my personal phone. I did manage to solve an email looping problem when forwarding RW voicemail to GV – Google determined that the problem was with GV and not RW, and they were able to reset something at their end (they wouldn’t tell me what) to get it all working properly… so, if anyone else has an email looping problem when using GV, call Google, and not RW.