How do I download voicemail messages?


I’d like to download some voicemail messages (.aiff, .mp4 or similar).

How do I do it?


Take a look at this thread.


Thanks amitl. That’s a solution that will work - but what an absolutely wretched and pointless exercise! The audio exists on a server in a digital format. It should be a simple matter to download the file. (In fact, a prior phone service I had included an option to receive ALL voice mail messages as .mp3 files via email. Very cool!) That process looks like: SERVER sends FILE to COMPUTER which SAVES THE FILE.

Instead, the only route open appears to be a Kafkaesque Rube Goldberg series of technological contortions: Using your PHONE, request the SERVER to PLAY the voice mail DECODING a FILE and CONVERTING it from DIGITAL to ANALOG, discarding all DATE/TIME INFORMATION, and ROUTE the SIGNAL from your PHONE to your COMPUTER (after BUYING and INSTALLING a CUSTOM CABLE) , which converts the ANALOG back into DIGITAL and ENCODES it into a FILE FORMAT for STORAGE. Just ignore the fact that the D/A A/D conversions will degrade the signal quality.

While I appreciate your suggestion, I am supremely disappointed in Republic Wireless if this is the best solution available. The list of voicemails should be available in one’s RW account as .mp3 files. Just click to download. Since the mechanism already exists for retaining them, and accounts already include the necessary security features, putting a web interface on the front of this would likely take a competent programmer familiar with the system all of about an hour to create - pretty much as simple as “select * from v_mail where owner=$ownerID order by date time desc” and then printing out a table that looks something like: v_mail_date v_mail_duration v_mail_file_size delete_v_mail download_v_mail play_v_mail.

In fact, since the voicemails are already on the server, and the overhead to play/download them would be less than or equal to listening to them on your phone, there should be at worst no net change in resources required beyond having to serve a web page, and since in the average case (download all my voicemails and delete) there’s no D/A conversion and the file storage resources are freed up on delete, this should actually reduce system resource requirements.

So does RW actually look at issues like this? Or do they just fob it all off on the community to churn until it goes away?

(Once again - thank you for the suggestion link. It’s not your fault if RW isn’t paying attention.)


As you can imagine, Republic gets lots and lots of feature requests. Voicemail alone regularly sees requests for downloading messages, turning voicemail off, increasing the number of rings before voicemail, increasing the length of the outgoing message, increasing the number of messages that can be stored, have an ability to bulk delete messages, etc etc etc

As Republic is a smaller company, resources are limited and priorities have to be established. I trust that Republic does take user feedback in to account, along obviously, with the business case. The more people that ask, the more likely that something will get done.


You know what would be really cool - and easy to implement? A page that tells us what RW is working on now and plans to do next. Something as simple as:

  1. Add voicemail download feature - ECD 9/12/17
  2. Turn voicemail off - ECD 9/15/17
  3. Change ring count before voice mail - ECD 9/20/17

You’ve listed a number of features that have been requested - Is RW doing anything about them (or not)? Does it have higher priority issues? Or is it doing nothing? At some point, whatever is being done (or not) is decided and a priority assigned. Something is currently being worked on (or not). There is a projected completion date (or not). There is an estimated number of man-hours assigned (or not).

Point is, unless I’ve missed a resource (and feel free to point it out if I’m wrong), RW is 100% opaque regarding what features it is working on (or not). Any reason for them to hide what they’re doing - unless they’re doing nothing?

Be easy enough to put up a feature list and let subscribers vote on what’s most important to them.

Oh - and voicemail download? Hard to imagine what sort of development cycle created their voicemail system without a download feature.


Having been around here since the beginning I can tell you:

  1. Republic used to allow people to vote on features they wanted. The history showed this creates more hurt feelings than anything else. People seem to fail to understand the needs of the business an think that simply because something has the most votes, it should happen. “Service should be free” is sure to get a lot of votes.

  2. Republic has tried estimated delivery dates in the past. I was an utter disaster. When dates were missed (as they often are in development, especially when other 3rd parties may be involved) the community screamed bloody murder. When dates are met, you don’t get to bank points for when you miss a date. There’s really no winning. What companies announce dates for future development?

  3. The most vocal people on the community represent a really small fraction of the overall customer base and often don’t represent the “average” customer. This is true for all companies. If you hang around the Samsung Forums you would think that they’re average customer is FURIOUS that they can’t unlock the bootloader on their Snapdragon powered S8. In reality, the average customer doesn’t know what either a Snapdragon or a bootloader is. So, often what the community demands, and those that participate in it demand, actually don’t at all deliver what the average customer wants.

Because of this Republic chooses to do market studies that properly measure the average customer, and use that in conjunction with what it hears from its loyalists on the forums to guide the business. Which to me, sounds like an entirely reasonable way to do business.

  1. Straw. Man. Instead why not cite, “RW should pay us for providing us service”? And yet, given a choice between downloadable voicemail and spiffy new color sets for the RW app - wouldn’t a vote make sense? It’s rational to list an assortment of doable things and let the customer choose - unless customer choice isn’t a factor in your customer service equation.

  2. Sounds to me like maybe they need better developers - or better leadership. We aren’t talking creating a system from scratch. We’re talking incremental changes. In software development, you very broadly have two types of project management: Waterfall and Agile. Moon shots are Waterfall. Incremental changes tend to be more agile. A typical “sprint” runs 3 - 6 weeks, and at the end of that time, you have completed features, tested, documented, ready to go on line. If you blow a schedule, the item goes back into the heap - usually assigned to the next sprint. Agile works because it’s essentially divide-and-conquer and the effort, time and resources are all easy to visualize. If a dev team exceeds their first sprint estimate, they adjust and do better the next time. If they’re still missing their targets after the second or third sprint, it’s time to make personnel changes. The features you enumerated are probably grist for a single sprint, that is to say, a decent dev team should probably be able to implement them ALL in less than 6 weeks.

  3. The most vocal people should have more of a say. Yes, they’re a minority. And the majority are cattle that will wander anywhere the herd takes them. They’re oblivious, quietly munching their cud and generally unaware of not only technology but life in general. Vocal people are those who have an interest - a complaint about a crappy implementation or a desire for a new feature. They’re, to borrow from an old Apple marketing theme, “The Crazy Ones”. ( If it weren’t for the “trouble-makers”, nothing would ever be accomplished.

“Market studies” in stark contrast, are the antithesis of creativity. Bean counters only care that the bottom line is zero. They’re not concerned with making anything better. The set of all great ideas that can be encompassed by a “market study” is contained by the set of ideas those designing the study can conceive. In all likelihood, that set is tiny compared to the good ideas NOT encompassed by the marketing study. Marketing studies aren’t about creativity, or improving features. They’re about wringing the last possible dollar from the consumer’s wallet. Marketing studies are to creativity, as darkness is to light.

But set that all aside for a moment. How about this: How about a list of features that have already been added and the dates they were added? Surely even you cannot quibble with that? Touting the list of impressive accomplishments and when they were achieved? And if all that’s accomplished in a year is the changing of the curvature of the RW “arch” on the phone app… put that down and let it stand as mute testament to the lack of progress. Conversely, if a dozen new features are added - let the innovation be recognized. Any problem with that?

Now, in the past 3 years, how many new features can you think of?


So we’re clear. I completely and utterly disagree with every single point you’ve made above. Especially number 3. It is the road to ruin. You end up with products that are too complex or don’t appeal to the masses.

Here are the major ones off the top of my head

This is just off the top of my head:

  1. Moving from phones locked to Republic with a custom ROM to Unlocked phones.
  2. Visual Voicemail
  3. Republic Anywhere on Windows, Linux, MacOS, iOS and Android
  4. Updates of the old phones from Kitkat to Lollipop
  5. BYOP
  6. Launch of a second cellular partner
  7. Email to SMS
  8. Cell to Wifi Handoff
  9. Unicode Messaging
  10. Shortcodes
  11. MMS
  12. Reactivation of legacy devices
  13. Tethering
  14. Bonded Calling

Honestly, if Republic so badly lacks innovation, and faills to listen to its customers, maybe someone like Xifinity Mobile is better fit for you. With the reputation for serivce, innovation and customer centricity over at Comcast, they’re sure to fit you better.

Finally, hey Republic, please don’t spend resources on downloadable voicemail. It’s not common in the industry because nearly no one wants it. Please use your resources to do anything else.

There, our votes cancel, what’s Republic supposed to do with that?


Just to add, Republic regularly publishes a summary “What’s New and What’s in the Works” in the PWK blog. They have been publishing these updates for quite a long time.

Here is the latest:


Good to know. Thanks.


Yes, google mail allows you to download phone messages as mp3…this IS 2017…so what’s Republic’s problem? Make $$$ from Voicemail forever?


Was that sarcasm?


Am I missing some mysterious voicemail revenue stream?


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