I have a Google Voice account (and a Grand Central account before that!), but I don't use it much. I think I should use it more, because in theory, Google Voice seems to do everything. Is anyone using it exclusively for their phone number? I sense that since smart phones came along and got smarter, that the need or niche for Google Voice diminished. Tell what Google Voice is good for, and what you use it for?
asked Jun 25 '13 at 17:45
I have a "Friends and Family" plan with my GV number assigned to my cell phone, and it forwards calls too (with the say your name filtering for "restricted" numbers). So it is free minutes, but I get cell-voice and not VoIP.
It is also a backup number, so if I lose my cell phone, I can move things so I can still use my tablet or other device to answer calls. Android contacts are usually in your google account.
If I've misplaced my phone, I can call it using GV and listen for where the ring is coming from.
Groove IP (from the Amazon App Store) lets me use it like Skype.
If I want to "livestream" some broadcast to my cell, I just call it and leave the computer on.
SMS is spotty but is sometimes useful.
If you have an old number (been in the family for years), you can port it so you won't miss long lost friends and relatives just trying it.
You can sometimes get a vanity number, 123-4567 is taken for all areacodes, but others are available.
answered Jun 26 '13 at 18:38
I'm a Grand Central veteran too using GV as long as it has existed. For me, there are 2 killer features:
1. Free long distance calls
Yes, I still have a land line. I cancelled my "dial 1" long distance years ago thanks to GV. This has saved me hundreds of dollars. To make a call, I simply autodial my GV # and append a pause, then 2# (to indicated I want to initiate a call). Then, I either dial a number or use my phone auto-dialer. You need to press "#" to kick the call off so I put that in any stored numbers I have. I sometimes initiate calls from my browser and tell GV to ring my home. Somewhat easier since I can use GV Contacts to fetch the number.
I also use this at work to make long distance calls; easier than inputing (and remembering) my 9 digit "calling code" to initiate a call.
2. Free texting.
I have a "dumb" mobile phone and pay 25 cents per text. Since I am in a WiFi zone about 95% of the time, I only give out my GV number as my mobile number -- then I get incoming texts as email or popping up on the GV browser page or Goolge IOS app. While I could respond by email, I find it easier to type in the browser or APP.
answered Jun 26 '13 at 22:14
I've been using GV plus an ObiHai (OB110) for about 2 years now for a home phone. It has been reliable and functions to provide voip thru a normal telephone with no cost other than upfront equipment. If Google wants to charge for it, I'll likely continue to pay because it's been a good service. The best feature is transcription of voicemail and forwarding to email. It's not very reliable for transcription, but does ok and includes a audio in the email. I forward messages to automatically to my email and my wifes email so a message goes immediately to both our smartphones. This has been great for school related autodial messages and drs appt reminders. No more waiting to listen to a computer.
It's important to remind people that there is no 911 service through this approach. That would have to be dealt with through another service to the OB110 box. There are several solutions I've read about; old mobile phone, land line, voip service with e911, but haven't pursued.
It did take a bit to get setup by transferring my home number temporarily to a T-mobile number and then on to Google Voice. This is obviously not the way Google was intending the service, since they are promoting the "one number to rule them all" approach. I did use GV for my cell number for a while and I did not think it added any benefit for that purpose.
answered Jun 28 '13 at 18:25
Love GV. Send VM by email. Easy text to many people. Record calls. Send recording by email. Change VM daily using preset recording. VM integrated with tmobile. Ring multiple phone number. International calls easy and inexpensive.
answered Jun 29 '13 at 17:49