Sunday, March 27, 2011

Gmail Voice screenshot

*Image courtesy of The Official Gmail blog

Google may well be on its way to take over the whole world, and one of the key weapons (read this article to understand what we mean) is the fact that Google starting offering free calls to any phone number (landline or mobile) in the United States, from Google Voice or from within Gmail. While Google Voice is yet to see an official launch outside of the United States, calling from within Gmail to US-based phones was previously possible from India only using a proxy or other “grey” solutions. Thankfully, not any more. Some thoughts and details await you past the “Read More” button below.

Cost

Don’t worry – you can relax, and stop frowning. This section is not to tell you “We told you it’s free, but it actually costs something”. Calls to the US and Canada are completely free from within Gmail. Yes. It’s true. Google also offers calls to other countries, a few are listed in the image below.

Gmail phone calls - rates

*Image courtesy of www.google.com/chat/voice/compare.html

You see the third country listed there? That’s our beautiful, fair India. And it’ll cost you 6 American cents to call any phone in this country from Gmail. That’s about Rs. 2.68/min. It sounds steep for someone already in India, but that’s very cheap if you are on a trip abroad and want to keep in touch with friends back home. All you’ll be needing is a voice chat-capable computer and a decent Internet connection. The full list of costs for calling phones around the world from within Gmail are available at the Google Voice website.

Now it works, now it doesn’t

Okay, when Google initially launched this back in August 2010, it was not working from within India without using proxies to fool Gmail into thinking that you were located in the US yourself. When Google announced the extension of these free calls till the end of 2011 (which happened in December), the article at The Official Gmail blog clearly states that it’s “currently only available to U.S. based Gmail users”. Yet, now, we are able to call quite freely. The thing is, there are times when we’ve not found the “Call phone” option in our chat list within Gmail. The same computer, on the same Internet connection, using the same Gmail account, but at another time and day is able to make the call. We really don’t know what’s going on here – but the fact is, if you do have the option inside your Gmail and there are friends in the US that you would like to chat with for free, go ahead and give it a shot.

Comparison with Skype

Skype logo

Call quality is not nearly as perfect as Skype. Skype mostly provides very good call quality. Calling from within Gmail to a person in the US – not as good. However, the advantage we see here is obviously the convenience and the cost of nothing. If you wish to make free calls from within Skype, you’re going to have to ask your friend to login to Skype. You can directly call your friend’s phone number, but you would have to purchase Skype credit to do that. Calling from within Gmail is completely free. How can you beat that? You can’t. It’s for jaw-dropping products like this that Google gets blamed for attempting to take over the world. Let us know in comments if you can or can’t make calls to US, okay? Thanks.

Source: Google, Gmail Blog

16 comments:

RAJINDER WALIA said...

call option was there fopr one day but it disappeared next day,why i fail to u8nderstand. Can you please give me the solution so that i can call from my gmail

rajinder
delhi

The Indian Geek said...

We have no idea regarding that, Rajinder. As we mention in the article, it keeps disappearing and appearing for us too. We don't know what is the factor that makes it disappear/appear.

Barbara Maria said...

why has skype taken over the Gmail facility to phone America and Canada? i cannot connect to numbers in those countries.(skype) is trying to charge me for those calls
Barbara maria  elysium_fields19@yahoo.com.au

Barbara Maria said...

Why cant i make phone calls to America / Canada for free on Gmail anymore ? without skype taking over? and trying to charge me. also when i to ring America it tells me the phone isnt available at this time ( all the time) yet 2 weeks ago everything was fine ?

SANDEEP SANDHU said...

its working man but if u are in US/canada . if you u want USE it freely from Non-US region
so u have to obtain a US based IP address.
I prefer "ULTRA SURF" from  www.ultrareach.com  its free software.
>> Run Ultra Surf
>>Login in your Gmail account
>>Call Phone option will be available.
>>Starts Unlimited free calling to US/Canada number.  
 Note* : Dont top-up any credits ($) with non-usa based credit/debit cards..  you will loose ur callphone icon.

*for Non-US users.

Timmy N said...

I better try this out, thanks.
call recording

Amit Solanki said...

 nice, its working, if u want to call US/Canada

David Mendoza said...

 Thanks a lot Boss, I was looking for something similar for a long time! UltraSurf is just awesome. THanks again!

Mohd Hassan said...

call

Angad Sandhu said...

http://www.saferays.com/2/magicjack-plus.php-Free calling to US and Canada 
-Your own free US phone number, so your friends can reach you and THEY only pay local rates 
- Its portable you can use your magicjackPlus anywhere there's high speed internet service (DSL, Broadband, Wifi, etc.)​

Angad Sandhu said...

http://www.saferays.com/2/magicjack-plus.phpFree calling to US and Canada. Your own free US phone number, so your friends can reach you and THEY only pay local rates. Its portable you can use your magicjack anywhere theres high speed internet service (DSL, Broadband, Wifi, etc.)​

Angad Sandhu said...

( http://www.saferays.com/magicjackplus )
Free calling to US and Canada -Your own free US phone number, so your friends can reach you and THEY only pay local rates - Its portable you can use your magicjack anywhere theres high speed internet service (DSL, Broadband, Wifi, etc.)​

Simil said...

I use magicjack plus that i got from my local dealer in Delhi.

I think the site was www.saferays.com

Before that i have used Skype but the sound quality was not always working thats why i change to magicjack

Akhil Sai said...

http://www.newsconvergence.in/2013/09/0-001-call-usa-free-using-android-iphone.html

Nikhil Pawar said...

It's great buddy! thanks for sharing
Free call to India

Nikhil Pawar said...

Nice Post! thanks for sharing
International Calling Card

Post a Comment