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What is Google Voice?

What is Google Voice?

There are many different apps and services to communicate with others via message. However, the telephone continues to be something that we all use, especially in business. The downside of phones is that you have a specific number tethered to a specific device. This can be a challenge if multiple people need to monitor a line or you have multiple devices. As they tend to do, Google has a service to help with those challenges called Google Voice.

Features

Google Voice is a service that allows you to either transfer an existing phone number to Google or create a new phone number and manage all calls, messages, and voicemails from the app. This puts the phone number in the cloud, cutting the ties from any specific phone. Then, it becomes a number you can manage however you want and on whatever device you want.

Pricing 

Google Voice is free of charge to all user accounts and every account can access all the features with no additional costs.

However, if you choose to use Google Voice for business by connecting it to GSuite, there are fees associated. There are three pricing options available: The Starter Plan at $10 per user/month, The Standard Plan at $20 per user/month, and The Premier Plan at $30 per user/month. Google recommends The Standard Plan, which allows an unlimited number of users to have access to the number in an unlimited number of domestic locations.

Additionally, while you can accept and make calls to numbers outside of the US, there are calling rates. Most rates lie at less than a dollar a minute.

Pros

  • It is available for personal and/or business use. Both have benefits including voicemail transcription, spam blocking, and the ability to record calls.
  • Utilizing it for personal purposes can be helpful if you want to create a personal number other than your cell phone number and want to manage calls from both on multiple devices, phones, or a computer.
  • Utilizing it for business purposes allows for you to connect it to your GSuite. It allows multiple users to have access to the number.

Cons

  • Google Voice is only available in 10 countries outside of the US. You can call numbers outside of the US for a fee as mentioned above. But, the use of the service itself is not available in every country.
  • Once your phone number is associated with Google Voice, you will have to use the app for texting.
  • You need WiFi to use Google Voice, whereas cell phones use cell service.

Google Voice is probably not enough to replace a mobile number tied to a cell phone, but it is a good option for managing a number or for getting a cheap business number. You can even create a vanity number when you first sign up to match your business, if available. It is free for personal use, so there’s nothing to lose if you give it a try!

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