It's official: Google Voice merges with Gmail

Yesterday Neowin reported that Gmail was getting some sort of phone call integration, but Gizmodo's reporting today that Google's officially announced the feature, and it's now been announced that Google Voice is merging with Gmail to provide web based voice calling.

It looks like previous rumors proved correct and Google said that the technology we saw yesterday uses the Gizmo5 code that they acquired last year. Gizmodo's got pictures showing that you can make calls in Gmail and that the call quality is "really good" even if you're just using a laptop with a built in microphone and speaker. Google said in a press event with Gizmodo that they have "really good echo cancellation."

The Google Voice integration offers international calls to a preset list of countries for 2c/min, and allows receiving calls via Google Voice in Gmail too. It'll just popup in your inbox and you can hit answer there -- and you can even move the call from Gmail to physical devices by clicking a button.

Calling will be free for U.S and Canada numbers, and the service doesn't require a Google Voice account to work. If you make a call without a Google Voice account the service will call with a consistent number, but not a customized one. If the person calls back that number they'll hear a prerecorded message telling them they got a call from someone on Gmail.

Google says that the feature will roll out progressively to users across the U.S and Canada over the next few days.

Have you got the new feature yet? Tried it out? Let us know in the comments!

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My friend was telling me about this. I'm glad they merged it with Gmail. It means non-US users can use the Google Voice service; however, you won't be able to use the advanced features (voicemail transcription, SMS-to-email, one number, etc).

Yesterday night, I noticed the Google Voice feature was available for me .. I tested it but I couldn't hear anything. I just checked it and I made my first call using GV but people on the other line cannot hear me >.> lol my mic works .. I wonder if Google still needs to fix something or is anyyone been able to make a conversation already?

astroX said,
Yesterday night, I noticed the Google Voice feature was available for me .. I tested it but I couldn't hear anything. I just checked it and I made my first call using GV but people on the other line cannot hear me >.> lol my mic works .. I wonder if Google still needs to fix something or is anyyone been able to make a conversation already?


Haven't tried it yet, and won't until I can actually make calls decently from my PC (the only use I have for it at present) Once I have a decent *application* that will let me use my GV number like Skype (even better, let *Skype* use GV phone numbers) it will remain an *unused* feature.

I don't see it mentioned, but this is only "free" until the end of the year. So they most likely will be charging for it, making it not worth wasting your time on.

Skype did the same thing when they first came out. Now days, you can get all your calls free with a package from your cable or voip company.

TC17 said,
I don't see it mentioned, but this is only "free" until the end of the year. So they most likely will be charging for it, making it not worth wasting your time on.

Skype did the same thing when they first came out. Now days, you can get all your calls free with a package from your cable or voip company.

I know. I mentioned it in my comment above. Apparently nobody cares lol.

Electric Jolt said,

I know. I mentioned it in my comment above. Apparently nobody cares lol.

I won't mind if the rate is reasonable. Probably nothing I'll be using all that much. My Google Voice number is set to forward to a couple of other numbers. Use it on my domain registration information to mask my real contact information.

Nightwind Hawk said,
Can I somehow use google voice with data only on my Android phone?? Instead of it counting as minutes?

Doubt it, straight-up VOIP on mobile networks will be squashed by carriers the second they get the chance.

LiquidSolstice said,

Doubt it, straight-up VOIP on mobile networks will be squashed by carriers the second they get the chance.

Why? AT&T allows VOIP on their network now. (Don't start about the data limits...)

Nightwind Hawk said,
Can I somehow use google voice with data only on my Android phone?? Instead of it counting as minutes?

I've been using Google Voice on Sprint Droid phone for months, works great. I do it not so much to save minutes as to only use my google voice number.

Call quality was so-so for a call to a Canadian cell phone number I made from IL. A call to a landline in the same town as me was pretty darn crisp.

KSib said,
Call quality was so-so for a call to a Canadian cell phone number I made from IL. A call to a landline in the same town as me was pretty darn crisp.

I've been using it to call my parent's landline in Canada from Australia. For me, the call quality is amazing. No idea how my parents hear me though.

Good. I wanted this to happen. Hopefully they merged the Voice mailboxes too. I didn't like going to a different address for my voicemail.

I don't like the free calling to any US or Canada phone number without a GV number. This would mean that we would start getting crank calls for no reason.

XPQ said,
I have it too in The Netherlands. Haven't tried it yet.

Maybe I'm blind, but where did you find it? I'm Dutch as well but no Voice here.

RuuddieBoy said,

Maybe I'm blind, but where did you find it? I'm Dutch as well but no Voice here.

im not seeing it either, then again i got allot of stuff disabled

RuuddieBoy said,

Maybe I'm blind, but where did you find it? I'm Dutch as well but no Voice here.

Ok weird. I just installed Ubuntu on my netbook, I log in to Gmail and what do I see? A big screen 'Welcome to Google Voice' ! Guess they didn't like my Windows 7

timljohns said,
Does anyone know if this GV roll-out beyond USA (seemingly) applies to Google Apps customers, or just Gmail ?
Apps feature rollouts have been typically slower, even though that is an offering from which Google actually makes money.

Jebadiah said,
Apps feature rollouts have been typically slower, even though that is an offering from which Google actually makes money.

True but the coding is more complicated too. There have been occasions where Google Apps customers got features before normal Gmail users. Most of this may change once the backend change is done later in the year. That change makes (for all intensive purposes) Google Apps accounts the same as normal Google accounts. Domain administrators can however dictate which features are accessable via those accounts.

timljohns said,
Does anyone know if this GV roll-out beyond USA (seemingly) applies to Google Apps customers, or just Gmail ?

Their blog has already indicated that it will be available to Google Apps customers soon. I've been using it for a while on a normal Google Account so hopefully they can merge nicely but they may wait until the backend change is complete before doing so.

Does anybody knows how much rogers will charge for incomming calls? The 706 number is from california, and i think it might not be cheap to get calls onto mobile phone?

qdave said,
Does anybody knows how much rogers will charge for incomming calls? The 706 number is from california, and i think it might not be cheap to get calls onto mobile phone?
I know with Fido that receiving long distance calls will deduct the time based of your plan. I'm assuming it's the same with Rogers. Maybe they're site has an FAQ or something with the answer.

Since yesterday I've been reading news about this service and to my surprise when I checked my gmail account today's afternoon found that I got the feature and works! I've made some calls already and the quality of the service is great. I'm in Venezuela, Latinamerica