Finally, anyone can port their mobile phone number to Google Voice. I’ve been doing so for the past six months. Thinking about making the jump? Here’s my experience, which is largely good. Plus, some thoughts on how this gives Android an added boost ahead of Verizon’s iPhone launch. I moved my cell phone number to Google Voice back in August. Similar to Mike Arrington, this was something special Google did for me, so that I could test out the service ahead of the public launch. Google Voice & Your Virtual Phone Number Google Voice gives you a virtual number that’s not locked to any device. If you port your number to Google Voice, you’re still going to need an actual phone to point the number at (unless you bravely decide to take calls only through the web-based version of Google Voice). The phone you point at is going to have its own telephone number. If you place a call using that phone without going through Google Voice, then your “real” … [Read more...] about My Life With Google Voice Number Porting, Six Months In
Google voice mobile
Those who choose to do this get all the benefits of Google Voice including low-cost intentional calls, call forwarding, blocking, screening and so on. Google Voice Goes Mainstream It’s really the first “mainstream” implementation of Google Voice. It remains to be seen how many “ordinary users” take advantage of it. Sprint has about 50 million subscribers. Right now it doesn’t appear to equally apply to Sprint’s pre-paid mobile units, Boost and VirginMobileUSA, although perhaps it will in the near future. (I’m not sure exactly what happens if you make your Google Voice number your Sprint number and then change carriers.) Google Voice had already introduced number porting. That enables users to make an existing mobile phone number into their Google Voice number — scenario “b” above. It costs $20 and is a bit of a pain but will work with any mobile carrier if you want to access Google Voice’s features via your mobile … [Read more...] about Sprint Integration Of Google Voice Start Of Something Bigger?
Beyond some of the processing and other technical upgrades in the new iPhone 4S, the standout feature of the new device is the Siri “Assistant.” It’s an expanded and enhanced version of what’s behind the existing Siri iPhone app, which is being shut down on October 15. And while Siri is not a “voice search engine,” people will certainly use it to find information and accomplish tasks they might otherwise have used search or apps to complete. Siri is more “transactional” than search, taking users to an “answer” or a page where a task can be completed (e.g., making a reservation on OpenTable, creating a reminder or calendar entry). However it can also take users to a list of results (“best sushi nearby”). As I wrote in February 2010, before Apple bought the company, Siri is not a search engine but you might use it like one. Beyond retrieving information Siri controls a range of functions on the device that includes … [Read more...] about Google Voice Actions, Nuance, Vlingo
When you first begin using Siri it’s not entirely clear what you can do with it. (It’s also not clear how to access it.) Yesterday Danny wrote up some initial thoughts/criticisms of the Siri local search experience. In this piece I’m going to offer some general thoughts comparing Siri (on an iPhone 4S) with Google Voice Actions on my current phone (Android EVO) as well as some head to head examples of queries on both. Siri Leans on Google If you say to Siri, “What can I ask you?” it returns a list of the categories of things it can do. However when I rephrased the question slightly and asked “What can I do with Siri,” it sent me to a Google search result. Indeed, Siri is not a Google killer. It relies heavily on Google search for things it can’t do or answer. For many users Siri may become the voice front end to Google search on the iPhone 4S and beyond. We may see Google’s query volume on the iPhone increase and not decrease … [Read more...] about Siri Vs. Google Voice Actions
Click-through rates for websites depend a great deal on their position in organic search results. But to what extent are local businesses further compromised as Google pushes all organic results further and further off the bottom of the mobile screen as it prioritizes paid ads, Google My Business listings, Knowledge Graph and/or Accelerated Mobile Pages? And when directories, aggregators, articles, reviews and chains dominate the top organic slots, what hope is there that the mobile user will scroll two, three, four or more screens to find the website of the local restaurant or hotel they seek? This is the first of two columns on the state of mobile search. This column is focused on what’s happening to mobile organic search – i.e. where websites come in the search engine result page (SERPS). The follow-up column will consider the Google-owned properties – particularly Google My Business and Knowledge Graph – that are displacing organic results, including the … [Read more...] about Is Google killing mobile organic search?