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Thursday Poll: Do you use Google Voice?

Google Voice may be my favorite Google service or Android app of all time. With the latest update that was released today, a great product managed to get even better and I’m ecstatic. As someone that has a handful of phones from varying places at all times, Google Voice allows me to manage them all under a single number. I can’t live without it. The free texting also comes in handy as well as the visual voicemail and access to them from both computer and phone, but the multiple phone number management is really the key here.

I’m just curious to know if others have given their life over to Voice like I have. If you haven’t, is there a particular reason? The biggest hurdle for me (and still is sometimes) was having to change my phone number with everyone. But once the initial pain of that was out of the way, it has been smooth sailing. Well, until someone tries to send you a picture message that is. But who does that in 2012 anyway? Email those, people. No one wants to see that low-quality, shrunken carrier MMS message when you can email the full version at no cost over data.

Do you use Google Voice?

View Results

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  • Michael Quinlan

    My cell phone IS my business phone.  I’m very leery of switching my business line to Google Voice, knowing their history of customer support.  While I have my email and calendar are hosted by Google using my domain (I forget what that’s called now) for free, I can always upgrade to paid service and get an actual phone number to call for support.  When that option is available for Google Voice, I might consider switching.  But until then, I’m happy using it for voicemail only.

  • I use it to “sign up” my friends for Cat Facts!

    • RadicalPie

      Lol nice

    • cizzlen

      haha oh yeah. you just gave me my newest trolling idea yet. thank you sir. 

  • I don’t use google voice. I used to, but it seems like it got incredibly slow on my computer. Not useful. I use google talk occasionally, but that doesn’t even have mms capability.

  • My family uses it exclusively for all texting. It saves almost $30 a month to drop texting from our Verizon family share plan, so thanks GV!

  • Bla

    I’d love to use it, but it’s not yet available in Germany :-/

    • It’s not yet available almost everywhere, too…

  • Matthew Fura

    Add MMS support, and I’ll go full bore with GV.  Until then, I can’t.  Get to many MMS messages from people.

    • Tim242

      Tell them to send them to your email, from their mms.

  • moelsen8

    what i want to know is why doesn’t the GV app do voip?  would it immediately get the banhammer from the carriers and blacklisted from the market like tethering apps and crap?

  • longhairbilly

    I use it for my voicemail and text.

  • Chris Batson

    I got a new number and use it as my work cell (that comes through my verizon number). Therefore I can screen calls and customers don’t know my cell.

    • CORYK333

      Exactly what i use it for….calling customers on my way to a job so i dont get these fools calling my actual #…..for that reason alone i LOVE the app, all the extra features are just a bonus for me

  • Booboolala2000

    One of my goto services. Still free too.

  • BSweetness

    I primarily use it for voicemail.

  • @nybeeks

    As far as I know you it doesn’t matter if you are under contract…I have a contract with the big red monster and I have a GV # – Google issues the number – it is in addition to my mobile number.

  • Without Google Voice, I don’t know where I’d be. Eff paying for messaging.

    • Tim242

      My sentimemts exactly!

    • CORYK333

      You would probably be exactly where u are now, except with less $$. Without gMaps/Nav is another story 😉

  • tbaybe

    google voice (voicemail) quit working on my verizon phone months ago. Has this been fixed? 

  • I don’t have a google number because I am under contract.

    • Tim242

      You can have both numbers. I just use the GV number for SMS. If you want to port your number, and just use one, Verizon will do it.

      • Really? Please link me or tell me in more detail. I really want to use it

        • Tim242

          You can just sign up for it and pick your number, if you want to keep both numbers. I use my Verizon number for calls and voicemail. I use GV just for SMS. I did not set up the voicemail. To use it for texts, or voicemail, just sign up. The only way you have to include Verizon, is if you want to port the GV number to replace your Verizon number. That’s a hairy process, but Verizon will do it, and you get to keep your services, as is. You just have to let them know what you are doing, then have them port the number. I like having two numbers though : )

          • isn’t there a fee for the porting? I am under contract.

          • Tim242

            Google charges you $20. Verizon will not charge ETF. You just need to inform them what you are doing. Once Google ports the number, you call Verizon to have them finish it up. You should call Verizon to square all of this away with them. You may also need to speak to their porting dept.

          • Wow. I love you. 😀 ill do it tomorrow.

  • Jason Frasier

    I use it for voicemail and sometimes SMS, usually don’t make calls with it though.

  • Kyle

    I wish you could import your previous texts to Google Voice

  • KreeTerry

    i just use it for voicemail, although i keep saying im gonna try it for txts and calls but havent yet.

  • @nybeeks

    I love Google Voice.  I use it in conjunction with work (they don’t pay for my mobile calls) I have it ring my desk and mobile from 8 – 5pm M-F, so that if I’m at my desk, I answer my desk phone.  I also us my GV phone # for non-friends and family callers – they never get my real mobile number.

  • Q

    I use it for voicemail and so I dont have to carry a work and personal phone with me.

  • Havoc70

    I use it for all my utility companies, and anytime i signup for anything, this way all i have to do is “Block” and never hear from them again.

    • tjmonkey15

      That’s exactly what I use it for too.  It’s great.  Also, since I don’t get cell signal at work, it’s great that I can have my GV number ring on my cell and my work phone simultaneously. 

    • +1 for this. Google Voice is my public number, that I don’t care if it gets spammed (yay block filter), and my real phone number is for personal stuff. Although, I also use Google Voice for voicemail (but that’s not something that anyone else can tell by calling me).

  • I use my vzw # and 2 google voice numbers ON 1 PHONE! one as a extra personal line and one as a business line… so ya I use it 🙂

    oh and free visual voicemail with 1 personal box for 2 numbers and a business box as well!

    • jayray78

      BS. Gv doesn’t allow one phone to have two GV numbers assigned to it.

  • I use it as my personal line as I have a company phone. It’s awesome.

  • Asuriyan

    I use the number primarily for my Craigslist dealings. An MMS feature would be extraordinarily useful.

    • CORYK333

      So you can find out if its really a man or a woman BEFORE you meet with them?

      • Asuriyan

        Har har… business, not ‘business’.

        • CORYK333

          I had to, was just too easy. Sorry

          • Asuriyan

            Yeah, I did kind of walk right into that.

            Oh yeah baby, let me see those curves… turn it around and show me your backside… ohh, your CMOS sensor turns me on… wait, what? There’s a power button for that.

  • Jeffrey Tarman

    I use it as much as possible. I have a shared minute plan with family and that includes 5 of us, so I use it with Groove Ip and never worry about using the minutes. It’s also very handy to give someone that you don’t want to hear from. Just let it go to vm, go to the web page and block them 🙂

  • You don’t need to change your phone #. You can Pay $20 to keep your #


    • ChuckDz3

      You have to be very careful about this. This is only recommended when you are going to renew your contract. If you do it in the middle of your contract your carrier has the right to terminate it and leave you with a lot of money to pay. 

      • Another question on porting  your number … if you’re grandfathered into an unlimited data plan with Verizon and you port your number to Google and have to re-sign up with Verizon … I assume you loose your unlimited data plan, right?   :^(

        • Tim242

          No. They will reinstate all of your original services. You just have to let them know what you are doing.

          • Jondoezersss

             I think this depends on the verizon person, and what kind of mood they’re in

  • WNY

    I have used it since it first came out.  My only mistake was having my wife establish a separate number, which we really don’t want, but it appears once established you can’t remove it.  I love having the voicemail feature.

    • WNY

      Forgot to add….. I do have to manage my calls to family members with verizon.

  • Kisuk3

    I have been reluctant to do everything with Google voice because of the number change but this latest update had got me rethinking it.

    • Tim242

      I just use both numbers. I use my Verizon number for calls, GV for SMS..

  • cheezer88

    i just use for free visual voice mail

    • Hohlraum

      which should have been a poll option if the author actually understood google voice’s functionality.

      • RadicalPie

        Really? You are incredibly funny.

    • BTLS

       I just use it for crazy broads… they don’t get my “real” number.  I simply enable “do not disturb” on them when they act up

      • Elle

        I use it for crazy men. When they start acting up, I designate their number as spam…

  • brando56894

    I really only use it for voicemail, never really had the need to use it for calls.

  • Tim242

    I use Google Voice for SMS. Paying carriers for SMS is a rip-off.

    • icewall

      Same for me. I refuse to pay for something that is clearly a rip off. I deal with the confusion of having a separate number for sms in order to save $20 a month. If I pay for sms whats next??? pay to stream youtube? I pay for data and that should include ALL forms of data.

      • Tim242

        Yeah, the confusion only lasts for a day. To be sure nobody sends to regular SMS, I had Verizon block all SMS messages. Then I uninstalled the message app haha.

      • brizz

        or you can just switch to gvoice entirely and there will be no confusion as to what number someone would txt you with

  • Joe

    I would love to use Google Voice, but can’t. Most everyone I know is on Verizon, so calls now are free when Verizon to Verizon. If I do Google Voice, then all my calls will go against my monthly minute allowance. 🙁
    I did try to find the sign-up for Google Voice Lite where I keep my number and carrier, but only get the voicemail option, but when I follow the directions on Google Support, the link to sign up on the Google Voice page is not there for Google Voice Lite. Oh, well

    • I’m in the same boat. I still use it, just set it to ask every time. 

    • Inquizitor

      I’m pretty sure there’s a setting to have it not used for calls. So you can just use the texting, incoming calls, etc.

    • i ported my number to gvoice… actually had a vzw regional deal for unlimited mobile to mobile on any carrier.  only i needed to change my number to one of the regional numbers.  $20 to port my number and call anyone i want when ever… great deal.

    • Brett Gadient

      This is your answer if you have at least one my friends and family number you can add.  Add your google voice number and use this.  

  • John

    I’d convert fully if they had MMS support. When someone sends my gvoice# an MMS now, it doesn’t send the sender nor myself an error message saying “not sent”. It just goes to 
    /dev/null  for whatever reason

    • Tim242

      Why would you use MMS on a smartphone? Email is much better. It does not compress the picture. If the other person doesn’t have a smartphone, just have them send it to your email. You can send to them from your email.

      • Johnvonne

        are you going to type the same thing after every response?

        • CORYK333

          HA!!!! He has a habit of doing that on another topic also.

  • Kris Brandt

    I use GV for Voicemail and International calls when the gf is abroad.  If GV was able to do MMS, I would’ve ditched the Verizon sms a long time ago.

    • Tim242

      Why would you use MMS on a

      smartphone? Email is much better. It

      does not compress the picture. If the

      other person doesn’t have a

      smartphone, just have them send it to

      your email. You can send to them from

      your email.

      • John

        Ya dude I know, but I still know people with dumb phones. My mom being one of them isn’t going to remember to send to my e-mail address. Not many will

        • Tim242

          When I first started using GV exclusively for SMS, I didn’t think people would remember. It caught on quickly. I had SMS blocked from my carrier number.

  • r0lct

    Combined with Tasker I automatically have calls routed to where I am based on who is calling.  At home and desirable contact?  Rings home and cell, work?  Desk and cell and computer.  

    Don’t know them?  Just cell and computer with screening.

    Based on my location it turns the different phones on and off. Requires a tasker plugin.

    Also:-Send caller to VM, listen and then pull call out of VM if I want it.-Different VM messages for different groups-Pickup calls on my desk phone

    •  how do you pick up calls on your computer w gvoice… been trying to figure this out forever.

    • CORYK333

      Damn, thats quite an impressive setup. I dont use it (GVoice) as extensively as you, but its nice to know the ability to tweak it with the help of Tasker is an option if needed.
      -Speaking of Tasker….it never ceases to amaze me the things that people get that app to do. Such a powerfull app with solid devs behind it, but the users also really bring out the functionality of it. I stopped using it a little over a year ago bc i didnt really need/use it for much, but good to see that it is still such a solid & well-used app.

  • I use it for craigslist stuff so i dont have to give out my real phone number lol. 

    • zepfloyd

      Not the only reason I use it, but I agree it’s particularly handy for this and have done it.

  • i just ported my VOIP phone line to google voice and now plan on using all the aspects of it including phone calls. it is a bit annoying you can only associate phone numbers with two accounts  (my house hold has 5 people in it) but it is better than nothing and its all free

  • I use it as my only number. I don’t know (without looking it up) what my carrier number is.  I text to/from it too.  I don’t use any carrier minutes at all with Google Voice and Groove IP using VOIP. It rings my desk phone during the day and I can text from my PC or phone.

  • I use it for international calling…and as a SIP phone for my business

  • -= )v(urphy =-

    Use it for voicemail only.

  • Iny

    I use it mainly for voicemail. I don’t want to get charged monthly just to see my voicemails in an organized fashion.

  • Love GV but since moving to Verizon (gasp) I have to manage it by having it ask everytime if i want to use GV.  I only have the 450 minutes and free Verizon to Verizon calls and free Nights and Weekends but if I’m using my GV number its not longer free V-V or free N&W.  Totally sucks but I’m not rich and can’t afford Verizon’s overpriced Voice plans.

    • It’s totally free in N&W.

    • will bartlett

      how isnt it free nights and weekends while using GV?

    • r0lct

      You only loose out on the free mobile-to-mobile, as others have N&W remain free.

    • I’m on the same plan and doing the same thing. I have Voice Plus ( https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bbrother.googlevoicebyname ) automatically select to use GV for non-verizon customers and my regular number for people who are on Verizon.

      I had to manually sort those contacts out and apply contact labels in Gmail (very simple process). I basically have “Non-verizon” and then everyone else.


    Google Voice is Awesome! Just get the MMS thing going and it will superAwesome!

    • Tim242

      Why would you use MMS on a

      smartphone? Email is much better. It

      does not compress the picture. If the

      other person doesn’t have a

      smartphone, just have them send it to

      your email. You can send to them from

      your email.

      • CARPDM

        Didn’t know I could Gmail a picture to someone & they would get it on their phone like MMS? OK I have to try it out, THANKS!

      • Bob

        hahaha, yeah because you want to give out your email to everybody as well as your phone number. Plenty of people send pics. Just admit it is a lacking feature in GVoice and move on. Pretending people who want to send a quick pic of something they randomly see should all send email is silly. 

        • Agreed Bob… i dont know why people pretend this isnt a big deal.. I send pics then sometimes I want a reply back right away on the pic.. why start an email convo?  if it had mms it would be perfect but not having it cripples it severely.. its weird… and if the other perosn doesnt have a smartphone what am I supposed to do..? wait for them to get to a computer to see a pic I want them to see immediately?

          • Noyfb

            Everyone I know has a smart phone and we all send pics through out text to each other, and they are all high quality for the most part. I can’t use free text option because my contract had text included when i originally signed up for verizon in 2009, so it renews with my unlimited data when I get a new phone.

        • Brizz

          why would i care to give out my email or phone number to someone

      • Wardenchinbach


        • Tim242

          Email gives you a better quality pic : )

      • Problem with this is if you wan’t to use your google voice number as your number you give out then you can’t do this. They just need to integrate google voice numbers with other text messaging clients already.

        • Tim242

          Just tell the people that send you SMS to send to your email. Problem solved.

          • They will never do that. People get phone numbers from your Facebook these days. They don’t use email or even google voice to send texts. They use the default app that says messaging on their phone. These are normal people. Not nerds like us who care about cool ways to do things like this.

          • Tim242

            Phone numbers on Facebook is crazy. If people want to send you SMS or MMS, they should do it the way you want. Once they do it, they get in that habit. My mom even uses GV now. She would rather save money, than worry about the convenience of others…over silly MMS.

          • CORYK333


      • moelsen8

        please tell that to everyone who sends me MMS’s.  the group MMS’s especially drive me f*cking nuts.. you get that initial picture and then 50 messages from people you don’t even know saying “wow” or “cool” and eating up all my gd messages.  i actually wish i could turn off MMS.

      • If they don’t have a smartphone, they likely don’t have a data plan.  Without a data plan, they can’t send a picture they just took with their phone unless it is via MMS.

        • Tim242

          They can send it from their phone via MMS, to your email address. That has been around for 10 years.

      • Totally agree with Tim242.
        MMS is obsolete and there are 10 or more other image sharing methods that work better.

        • Sdny8

          We need a better form of mms. One that’s just as easy but can send up to 5mb files.

        • zepfloyd

          but how else will my gf send me hot personal shots of her boobs?!?!?

          • patapongirl

            there are apps for that…like Whatsapp.

            MMS is definitely obsolete. 

          • zepfloyd

            My tongue in cheek joke aside, MMS is not ‘definitely’ obsolete. Maybe some people don’t use it as much but I certainly get a ton of them. It’s Google’s largely ignored it for whatever their reason is across Voice and Talk. Why the heck should I have to use a different app when MMS is universal to people like grandparents with feature phones. Email is slow for something like this, ironic enough. “Hey is this the right box of whatever you wanted?. Oh btw you’ll need to check your email to see.” Fail. Frankly it seems people are quick to write it off around here as obsolete kind of defensively because it’s a missing feature which is very Apple-esque…where ironically iMessage on iOS supports picture messages on it’s data messaging platform. 

            If Android is supposed to be a choice, it should be there. If you don’t want to use it fine, but don’t excuse it’s absence.

          • Bob

            Exactly. They are covering for a deficiency in an Android/Google feature that they would lambast Apple for if the role was reversed. 

          • feztheforeigner

            Wouldn’t you look to see her boobs at full-resolution? Email.

        • Thanassi

          MMS is not obsolete to the other 90% of the consumer population that isn’t a phone geek like us.

  • Armorthane

    I use it primarily for my business customers and so that I don’t have to upgrade my texting plan because my girlfriend would rather text than talk. Go figure…

    • CORYK333

      Lucky bastard

  • Kal5el

    Thought about it.  Don’t want to change my number.  People I haven’t talked to in 4 years know they can get ahold of me by dialing my number.  Had it for 11 years.

    • You don’t *have* to port your number.  You can keep both a GV and carrier number– just ween people off the old one as you talk to them, and anyone who still has it can still use it.

    • Not a personal thing towards you, but in general, why this sentiment? 

      First, who wants to talk to “people I haven’t talked to in 4 years?”Second, what about facebook? If I’m trying to get a hold of someone I haven’t called in 4 years, I’d probably just go to facebook first anyway.

      Just saying, if someone wants to get a hold of you, there are other ways besides your old phone number.

  • Yeah, I don’t particularly understand the outcry for MMS.  My phone has internet and all the pictures I need to share go to G+ and FB anyway…

    • Not everyone wants to go to G+ and FB to see the pic you want to share with them…MMS is much more convenient. Especially if they are not android users. 

      • But you also have the option to email it!  Unless you’ve got a lot of friends with non-internet phones and very limited internet access I don’t see the need.

        • Not everyone has a smartphone, or is interested enough in a picture you want to send them to check their email. It isn’t convenient, which is the whole point of it being a problem.

          • If they’re not interested in my picture why am I sending it?

          • Caleb Martin

            If the picture isn’t worth them checking their email for, then does it really need to be sent at all?

  • RedPandaAlex

    I’m planning to migrate my phone number to Google Voice. Just haven’t gotten around to it yet.

  • It’s my primary Voicemail. And I use it for some texting. 

  • I use it all the time since I have sprint integration. I used it all the time when I had my OG Droid as well. GV is awesome except for MMS!!!

  • Raloc

    If there could figure out mms and bring the integration as seen on Sprint to the other carriers I would use it.  But right now it’s a bit too involved for it to be practical for me.

    • Google voice is stupid with the whole MMS thing. If an MMS is sent then it should just be sent to you as an email and you can reply to that email to reply to the MMS. it should and can be that easy and doesnt require any special permission from the carriers. Google needs to grow a f-ing pair and tell the carriers to go suck dick. apple does that all the time and that is why their phones are bloat free and have whatever options they want on it!

      • Wouldn’t Google have to get the Carriers to forward the MMS message to their service in the first place?  I may be misunderstanding things, but if not, unless the carriers did this there would be no way for Google to get them.