Send free voice-to-text messages from your cell phone with Jott

The incredibly useful Jott turns your voice into text and delivers it to you, someone you know, your blog, or any number of other destinations.

Rick Broida Senior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Rick Broida
One of the Web's best freebies, Jott turns your spoken words into text messages. Jott

You know the old trick of leaving yourself a voice-mail reminder? Jott does that idea one better, turning your message into text that's delivered via e-mail. All you do is call Jott from your cell phone, then say your piece. The service transcribes your message and sends it to your inbox.

But that's just the tip of the Jott iceberg. By setting up an address book on the Jott site, you can also have messages delivered (via e-mail and/or text message) to friends, family members, co-workers, etc. You can "Jott" a new entry to your Google Calendar, send a Twitter update, add a post to your blog, and so on.

Jott is ridiculously easy to use, incredibly convenient (I use it to send myself reminders when I'm behind the wheel and can't easily take notes), and, best of all, free. The catch? Jott relies on human operators to transcribe your messages. I know this will bug the bejeezus out of privacy-mongers, but the service does promise total privacy. And, hey, if you've got something super-secret to say, no problem: don't use Jott.

Me, I've got it programmed at the top of my speed-dial list. It's one of those Web gems that sounds too good to be true, but turns out to be even better.

Thanks to Craig, Doug, James, Pat, and Robert for reminding me that not everyone has heard of Jott.