About Computers for Newbies & Everyone Else

February 28, 2012

Google Voice

See Google Voice for yourselfOver five years ago I wrote an article that told us about how Google had just bought up another small company.  That company was found on the web at and it was evidently called Grand Central.  As the years went on I continued using the program with its new Google branding and it worked well, but I never started using it fulltime.  A couple of months ago I made the switch and now Google Voice is one of my favorite applications/sites.  As usual with all Google products, once it hit the mainstream, it works pretty much flawlessly. 

Google Voice has so many features that I will not be able to mention them all here; however, at Google Voice Help you can find out all you need to know…and more.  With some great videos here.

Remember, these features are my top five favorites.  Your opinions may vary with usage.

1)    First up is a paraphrase from Lord of the Rings, "One number to rule them all."  Google Voice allows you to have one phone number and you can set up which phones you want it to ring, from none to many.  So if someone calls your GV number it can ring your cell, home and office phones all at the same time.  This allows you to receive the call wherever you are located.

2)    The next feature I find very useful and fascinating is that all messages are transcribed and sent to your email, as is the actual recording.  So you do not have to call in to get your messages since they are immediately in your email.  This allows you to keep them as long as you want and even email them to someone else if you wish.  The transcription works pretty well but is not perfect; however, it has been my experience that they are close enough to easily interpret what they mean.  And sometimes they provide a laugh. 

3)    Next, you receive a call.  It shows you who is calling you, even a picture if you have them in your Gmail contacts with a photo.  You can choose to either answer the incoming call or send it to voice mail.  The interesting thing is that if you send them to voice mail you cannot only listen as they leave a message but you can interrupt and speak with them while the caller is talking.

4)    The next feature is one that sometimes moves to the top of my favorites.  If you have a person listed in your Gmail Contacts and decide you no longer want to hear from them you can block their number.  You block them from within your contacts settings online.  Once they are blocked and they call you, they get the standard, "We’re sorry you have reached a number that is no longer in service…"

5)    If you need to conference in many people on one call, like your seven member team from work Google Voice provides free (and very easy to use) Conference calling.

These are just the top five features I like in Google Voice.  There are many others like, answer on one phone and transfer to another, recording calls, setting when and which phone should ring by either time or who the caller is, free text messaging and on and on.

You get a local phone number free along with most everything else.  To quote Google, "All the features are free, except for calls placed outside the United States or Canada; you’ll be able to make those calls through Google Voice at an affordable price"…if you wish.

1 Comment »

  1. […] Voice – One of Google’s greatest free apps, […]

    Pingback by 2012-06-18 WSVA Show Notes » — June 18, 2012 @ 11:39 am

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