With the plethora of amazing iPhone apps that flooded the market this year, I felt I needed to pin one with my “Pee My Pants iPhone App of The Year” award.
Now there are many clear contenders for this distinctive honor, and plenty that go into my “All Time Favorite” category. Like Navonics GPS marine chart plotter for use when sailing. Or who can ever pass up patching iFart through your CUV’s (Child Utility Vehicle) stereo system with the kids? But HeyTell has revolutionized the way I communicate with my iPhone. No gimmicks. No having-to-learn-a-new-language. Just pure awesome.
In fact, HeyTell actually takes me back to when I was 12, coveting those way cool walkie-talkie’s that Michael J. Fox used in Back To The Future.
Think of HeyTell like text messaging your voice. No, not voice recognition. Your actual voice. And it’s perfect communication.
Here’s what I mean.
Text messages require you to take your eyes off whatever you’re doing (aka driving!) and type something. Conversely, phone calls–while hands-free–carry all sorts of cultural pre-requisites even amongst the closest of friends: “Hi. How are you? Good? Good. My day was fine, thanks. Yup. Oh, you’re Aunt Mary has hemorrhoids? Sorry to hear. No, my kids are fine. Uh huh. The weather? Um, yeah, the weather is fine, too.”
When all I needed was a quick one-sentence answer.
First select one of the contacts in your address book that owns a smart phone (Droid, iPhone, *iPad, *iTouch [*with head phones & mic]), and then hit the big orange “Hold and Speak” button. Just like a walkie-talkie, whatever you say while the button is depressed gets sent out over the wire. Then you can either wait for a reply, or, like a text message, fire-and-forget, knowing they’ll get back to you when they have time.
For me, a mobile phone has become all about convenience. As one good friend put it, I answer when I want, and I send you info when I want. Self-centered? Absolutely. But with reason. I don’t have time to waste. The lives I’m dealing with presently are too valuable to sit around and wade through pleasantries and adjust my life to over 1,600 contacts in my address book. (Yes, that’s a lot).
So like texting, it’s super convenient. I get back to you when I can, you get back to me when you can. And also like texting, friends don’t need to ask me how my Aunt Mary’s hemorrhoids are. Just cut straight to the chase. But like phone calls or voice mail, I get to say what I need to (way faster than texting), and in turn, I get to hear your voice and all its inflection. No missing out on tone, sarcasm, or emotion.
If that weren’t perfect enough, it’s free. Sure, they’ve added some seriously cool additions you can purchase (which, funny thing, I have) that let you alter your voice, customize your name with icons, and set up groups, but I’ll leave that up to you.
If you pee when you first start using this app, don’t say I didn’t warn you.
The best part, of course, is feeling like Michael J. Fox. That, or a truck driver with a CB radio. As my dad and mom used to say when signing off on their registered CB handles, “KMW-9947, thank you for the break!”