Earthlink offers users e-mail by phone

Internet service provider (ISP) Earthlink Inc. furthered its services push Tuesday, offering users the ability to listen and reply to their e-mail over the phone.

For US$4.95 a month, Earthlink customers will be able to dial a toll-free number and have access to their unread e-mails from their inboxes. An automated voice reads users’ e-mail over the phone and customers are able to delete or skip messages with a voice command, as well as reply to e-mail with a WAV audio file attachment.

Earthlink is providing the E-mail-By-Phone service through deals it made with speech applications company AudioPoint Inc. and revenue service provider Erogo Inc.

The ISP has been working to broaden its revenue stream by rolling out a variety of new services. The company recently launched a Calling Card service that allows customers to make cheap long-distance phone calls from their PC or telephone.

Earthlink, based in Atlanta, Ga., currently boats 4.9 million subscribers.