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April 22, 2010 3:31 PM   Subscribe

This may be completely unanswerable, but can anyone remember the maximum number of voicemail messages someone with an average U.S. cellular plan could keep in their mailbox at one time... about 8-10 years ago?
posted by thinkingwoman to Technology (8 answers total)
I'm sure it would vary by carrier, but if you need some random anecdata, I had my first cell phone about 8 years ago with Cellular One and I could only keep 5 voicemail messages at a time.
posted by amyms at 4:00 PM on April 22, 2010

I have had cell phones for the past 11 years and I can't remember ever hitting a limit unless I let things get really backed up. Certainly, I never felt limited by it.

Sorry for not having a specific number.
posted by Abbril at 5:15 PM on April 22, 2010

Response by poster: random anecdotes are probably the best I can hope for, so yes. I just had a random memory of coming back from 7 weeks abroad without my cell phone in 2001 and finding my voice mailbox full, but I can't remember how many messages that might have been.
posted by thinkingwoman at 5:16 PM on April 22, 2010

Oh, you might want to disregard my earlier answer. By "keep in their mailbox" I thought you were referring to the "save this message" option (i.e. saving voicemails after already listening to them). On my plan, I could only "save" 5 voicemails at a time (I remember it so specifically because of the frustration of having to delete things I wanted to keep) but I don't remember how many messages the inbox would hold while waiting for them to be retrieved, sorry.
posted by amyms at 5:56 PM on April 22, 2010

One suggestion, if the carrier you had at the time is still in business, you could call their customer service and ask, on the off chance that someone there might know (or at least could make an educated guess).
posted by amyms at 5:59 PM on April 22, 2010

I got my first cell phone in 2003, from Verizon, and I distinctly remember that the inbox held exactly three messages. Yes, it was annoying, and people kept complaining that they couldn't leave me messages. (They charged extra for the upgraded voicemail that would let you have more messages (and record your own greeting), but I don't know if there was a limit to that, because I never bought it.)
posted by sineala at 6:50 PM on April 22, 2010

Best answer: I vividly remember having my voicemail box hit 'full' at 25 messages on 9/11. I was using Sprint at the time.
posted by smoakes at 10:33 AM on April 24, 2010 [1 favorite]

It depended on the carrier. When I worked for AT&T Wireless, it was a time limit. I think it was approx. 5 minutes of VM time but the limit on an individual voicemail was about 30 seconds.
posted by drstein at 1:13 PM on April 26, 2010

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