Damn. I want this so bad. Google Voice, formerly known as GrandCentral and acquired by the company in 2006, has finally launched officially in the US. It’s a service that gives you one phone number that can access all your phones, for life, for free.
It’s been invite-only for nearly two years, and there are apparently tens of thousands of people on the waiting list, but Google will shortly be letting some of those people in. Accounts have, in the past, gone for up to $650 on eBay.
The way it works is that you get given a mobile phone number, and then a web interface lets you redirect that number to any phone you like. Going on holiday? Redirect it to the hotel you’re staying in. Leaving the office for an afternoon? Send people to your mobile phone. Expecting a call you don’t want? Put the caller through to the fax machine.
There’s also Spinvox-esque voicemail transcription, text messaging, friend settings (so that certain people can bypass your voicemail) and call recording. There’s even conference calling, and you can add credit to the account to make very cheap international calls, just like Skype.
Sadly, the service is only available in the USA. That’s a big 🙁 for me. When can we get that going down in the UK? It’s got to be possible, right?