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Hangouts is Now an Option for Making Calls on Google Voice

Google Voice and Hangouts will be merged at some point in the future, at least that is what Google keeps telling us. Google announced back at last year’s I/O conference, again in October, and then again in March that Hangouts is the “future” of Voice, only they forgot to give us another update at this year’s I/O conference. So yes, we are more than a year into this supposed merger of Hangouts and Voice, yet the mystery surrounding the timing of that action is thicker than ever.

Thankfully, we know that at least Google’s Alex Wiesen has not stopped working on Google Voice. He told us back in June that Google is working to improve voicemail transcriptions with your help, and has followed that up with the unveiling of Hangouts calls through the web version of Google Voice. Mentioned on his G+ page last night, Weisen noted that when placing a call through the web version of Voice, you now have the option to call through Hangouts instead of through your phone or “Google Talk.” If you aren’t a G+ user, you can still use the Hangouts option as it doesn’t require a G+ account. 

I checked this morning and the option is already in my Google Voice calls drop-down.

So does this mean we are even closer to the Hangouts-Voice merger? Eh, maybe, maybe not. If anything, it at least shows that both products still exist, team members from each are working together on some level, and that calls in Hangouts are not quite as attached to G+ as they once were.

google voice hangouts1

Via:  +Alex Wiesen | Engadget
  • realMikeH

    Choosing Google Talk today now results in a message “Invalid Number”. It appears Google Talk may be now turned off. Others have reported the same at dslreports.

  • David Li

    Well its been there if you’re calling from Gmail or the Hangouts app (Chrome OS). We need this on Android.

  • Snoopy Dawg

    User: “Can you hear me now?”

    Hangouts: “Yes, every word.”

  • monkeybutts

    Hope this means hangouts for android will get VoIP integration soon.

  • Lucky Armpit

    So wait, to place a call through the web version of Voice, I now have the
    option to call through Hangouts instead of through my phone or “Google
    Talk, and that DOES NOT require I be a G+ member. But to be able to send a picture via SMS through Hangouts, I have to have a G+ account? That is the most stupid, bone-headed logic I have ever heard.

  • droidrazredge

    Well this is better than nothing I’d say. At least we can see the integration happening if it is going slowly. Still wish there was someway I could port the superior iOS version of Hangouts since we all know it has all the things that Google says would be in the Android version of Hangouts for a while now….

  • tspx23

    This is kind of old news isn’t it? been using hangouts for calls for the past month or so…

    • monkeybutts

      It didn’t have access on the google voice page. It used to only have access from within gmail

  • JolleyMan

    Sigh, I still just want MMS with VZW.

    • LionStone

      That will come with the integration w/ Hangouts

  • Silver Veloz

    Will this mean I can make a “free” call from my WiFi only Nexus (2013) tablet with Google Voice (someday soon)? That would be cool.

    • ahniwa

      There are various ways you can do this now if you dig a little.

  • James

    Only works if you are on the GV website. Doesn’t offer the ability to call numbers elsewhere on the web, like GV used to. Numbers still appear as links if you have the GV extension installed in Chrome, but you can’t actually send the call to Hangouts.

    I know this stuff is complicated, but it’s abundantly clear GV is a low priority for Google. Still no MMS, group messaging, VOIP on Android, Hangouts integration…

    • Ugh, you’re right – the extension doesn’t show the Hangouts option. 🙁

      • BK

        Yep. You could already make a call directly through Hangouts on desktop, so this “new” functionality is pretty worthless.

        Hey Google, rolling out meaningless “features” for GV isn’t going to appease loyal users who have been waiting a long time for promised improvements to appear.

  • Stinker

    Until it means you can send an sms from gmail, who cares?

    • Juan Carlos Cornejo

      I care, as I call through my computer more than through a phone.

      • Stinker

        Alright, well, my point isn’t the calling, it’s the sms. I sms from my computer more than a phone. Which makes hangouts completely worthless.

        • Juan Carlos Cornejo

          That’s true, I almost exclusively send SMS from my computer too. Hope that feature comes to hangouts before the end of the decade…

          • RyanAndTammy

            Agreed, Mighty Text is a nice alternative to a native app but I’m still waiting for an all encompassing Hangouts with sms, mms and calls available on all of my devices.

    • ahniwa

      If you use Voice and forward your SMS to Gmail, you can send SMS replies from within Gmail. So there’s some functionality there to build on, at least.

  • Firelight

    It’s not showing as an option on my Chrome extension. If I go to the Google Voice web page it does show up. I never go to the actual Voice page. Like – ever. I use the extension and the app on my phone and that’s it. So this is not really that functional.

  • Until Google lets me port my number over, they’re f*cking dead to me. I’ve been trying for 4 years to port my number over. Always tells me it’s unavailable.

    • tdurden64111

      Just forwarded this to Sergey. He’s on it.

  • Michael
    • tdurden64111

      Does this mean that all we need is a phone that can receive data and companies like VZW will go out of business? Or do we still need their towers for sending and receiving signal?

      • Where will you get your data from without companies like Verizon…?

        • tdurden64111

          Satellites I hope?

          • Space Cadet

            Yes, satellite communication are very cost effective.

          • tdurden64111

            Ya, dude. They just sit up there doing nothing. Free energy from the sun. What more could you ask for?

          • Chris Johnson

            Funny!!! LOL

    • James

      no, it’s not.

    • Blue Sun

      You jumped the shark too early.

  • Ray

    Until it’s available on my phone I’m not interested in talking to a laptop

    • Shane Redman

      Gotta start somewhere tho…

    • James

      Hey, it only took them 13 months to give the functionality back…