Thursday, May 22, 2014

Still no Google Voice love for Android users

     Late last year (2013) Google announced that it would stop XMPP support for Google Voice on of May 15th of this year. For those of you unaware of what XMPP is, it allowed third party apps to access Google Voice and allowed users of that app that also had a Google Voice number to be able to make phone calls from Android devices. With support for XMPP having been dropped it meant those 3rd party apps no longer function with your Google Voice number.

     This got plenty of Google Voice users who use Android panicking about what they were going to do to adapt and find other means of making calls.

     Some of the those 3rd party apps developers were also panicking about how they would continue to provide a means for their users to make phone calls on their android devices. Some, like Talkatone, adapted quickly and switched their service from piggy backing on Google Voice to changing to a voip model. What did this mean for Talkatone users. You can continue to use Talkatone with two changes. One, you will get a new number from Talkatone. I need to read up on whether or not you can port your Google Voice number over to Talkatone.  But, I did read today online that doing so would involve a charge. Two, outbound calls cost 1 cent per minute at this time. There are also other VOIP apps that charge a similar rate for outbound calls.

     But, what about Google Voice for Android? Why are we still waiting? Google Voice was integrated into the app for iOS a while back already. If you have a windows tablet or phone with full windows 8.1 you can still use Google Voice as you always have or with the Chrome hangouts app. Yet many months after the first decision to pull the plug on XMPP support Android users are still waiting. I ask again. Why are we still waiting?

I will continue to monitor the progress on finally getting Google Voice integrated into Google Hangouts. Hopefully I will have good news soon.

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