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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Google Voice now built into Gmail


This story isn't directly related to Android, but it's exciting news for those of us that use Google Voice. After months of rumors, Google has just announced that free VoIP calling is now built right into Gmail. The service is built on Google Voice and promises free calling to the US and Canada at least until the end of 2010 (what happens after that is anybody's guess). International calling is as cheap as 2 cents per minute and call credits can be purchased through Google Checkout.



The new service will allow you to place or receive calls straight from your Gmail window. If you're an existing Google Voice user, your Voice number will be used as your outbound caller ID. The service is being rolled out over the next few days, so if it's not live in your account yet, be patient.

Excited is an understatement! This is a feature I've been waiting for ever since Google bought Gizmo5 back in November of last year. The ability to make calls from the desktop using my existing number will be amazing. Services already exist that do this, of course, but they're not free, and require using a different outgoing number. Now, I can call someone from within Gmail and have it use my existing Google Voice number (which is my primary phone number), as the caller ID.



I am definitely not as excited about this as Ryan is. But I'm also not using my Google Voice number right now. I can see how this would be really appealing for people using Google Voice as their  primary number, and who are already sitting at their computer for most of the day. I don't know if I would use it, though.


[thinking....]

I actually can't think of a time when I would use it.... But if you're someone who would, then more power to you--it's going to be awesome for you.

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