Google Voice app comes to the iPhone

17 Nov 2010

Google says it is taking the Google Voice experience on the iPhone to a whole new level with the launch of the official Google Voice for iPhone app.

Earlier this year, Google launched a Google Voice HTML5 web app for iPhone users. The VoIP app is currently only available in the US to download.

In a move that will hardly endear mobile operators struggling with falling ARPU, the launch of Google Voice as an app will make it easier for users to make free calls and integrate their calls into their digital lives by merging them with platforms like Gmail.

Christian Brunschen, a software engineer focused on Google Voice, explained that with the new native app, users will continue to have access to all the major Google Voice features on their iPhones, like cheap rates for international calls, free text messaging to US numbers; voice-mail transcription; and the ability to display their Google Voice numbers as caller ID when making calls.

Push notifications

“With push notifications, the app will alert you instantly when you receive a new voice-mail or text message,” Brunschen explained.

“Most of your calls will be placed via Direct Access Numbers, making them connect just as quickly as regular phone calls,” he said.

Google Voice for iPhone is available to download from the Apple App Store today in the US. You’ll need an iPhone with iOS 3.1 or later and a valid Google Voice account to use the app.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years