Should You Sign Up for Google Voice? Xconomy Readers Share Their Beta Experiences

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“I use it as my primary number. In fact, I actually changed my AT&T number so that it wouldn’t be called directly from people who still used my old number. I have never given my *actual* AT&T number to anybody.”

“I have not used it as much as I had expected. Most of my friends have not switched over to my new number since my cell phone number is still good. I have used it for new friends and placed it on my resume as my POC.”

“Occasionally. Whenever people call me on that number instead of my old number.”

“I have started handing out my [Google Voice number] instead of cell phone. So I use it 10-30 minutes a day.

“I did sign up but I have not made any use of it, unfortunately. I would have liked to but then work (life?) got in the way. I do plan to get back to it and exploring it further.”

Does Google Voice do what you expected?

“Absolutely. There may even be more functionality I haven’t worked with yet.”

“Yes, and more.”

“What I use it for and what i like:
* Routing all my text messages through one account and then to my cell phone
* I usually now only give out my Google Voice number, it’s on my business cards for work and a ton of other places. I love being able to screen calls and track who’s called online.
* I use a Google Voice app on my android phone (I have a G2 that I got at Google IO and it works ok with the phone).”

“It has far exceeded my expectations. One of cool features is the ability to set up multiple groups and voice mails for each different group. I particularly thought that I would get a lot of use from the voicemails. However with my phone ringing in all three locations —Home, Work, and Cell—I always have a chance to answer the phone. So I have not seen a lot of activity on the voicemail side. But hey, isn’t that the idea to be more accessible (if you want). You can just as easily not be accessible and allow much to go to voicemail. I think the listen in feature is very very cool. There are times when I don’t want to talk but am interested in the voicemail right now.”

“I did not really understand what it was until I had the opportunity to play with it, and then I did not really have use for it. I guess that I was thinking that it would be more like Skype. We use a virtual PBX at our company and Google Voice would probably be a better option for that application, but the virtual PBX numbers and system are already established at this point.”

“Oh yes. And more. It’s really rethought the way I’ve used my telephone. I can block, redirect, turn on, off, conference without going though my telco at all. It’s incredible.”

“Overall, I am happy with the service. I have not used the outbound calling feature, but the other features are nice. I especially like the message transcription service. Over the course of my use of the service, the accuracy has improved, but it is still not perfect. It has been enough for me to get the general idea of the message, which has allowed me to determine if I need to step out of a meeting, etc. to call the person back (or if it can wait).”

“Yes, it works well. The transcription needs a bit of work but is very useful. I hate listening to voicemail so it’s really a godsend.”

“Yes. It works great. The voice quality is very good. The transcription of messages is good. Both the web and mobile web interface are very nice.”

What complications or difficulties have you experienced?

“Not one.”

“At first, calls were Caller ID’ed as ‘Unavailable,’ but after changing some settings, it works just fine.”

“I use it extensively at work, I love the dialing feature. And it is great to build a database of those who call. The one difficulty is that when I go home it is not convenient to use the Web app to dial out. The time that it takes to go to the website, select the person, then have it dial you back gets pretty annoying. I was psyched when the GV Mobile app came out for the iPhone. Great app, but it too is still too time consuming when I want to call my wife or son.”

“Mostly problems regarding calling directly though the phone. One has to quickly learn to call from the Web page or the 3rd party google voice applications. The text message (406) number helps a lot.”

“When Google went down a few months ago, it played havoc with Google Voice. My wife called my number and actually got through to a stranger. This has got to NEVER happen again.” … Next Page »

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Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @wroush

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