Mike Isaac

Recent Posts by Mike Isaac

New Hangouts App Conflicts With Google Voice Feature; Fix Coming

Last week was a big week for Google+ — the company revamped its stream to look much more Pinteresting, beefed up its photo capabilities to the nth degree and unified Google’s messaging product across multiple platforms, now dubbed the “new Hangouts.”

There’s just one problem with the last feature: Upgrading to Google’s new version of Hangouts denigrates another of Google’s nifty services, Google Voice. After the upgrade, you’ll no longer be able to make outbound Google Voice calls from the Web or via the Chrome extension (obviously a pretty important feature in a phone service).

The good news: That handicap seems to be only temporary.

So for Google Voice loyalists, at some point in the future, one service won’t come at the cost of the other. That’s a very good thing; Google’s new Hangouts product, frankly, is pretty great. It unifies chat across Gmail, Google+ and your phone, and includes video-calling options. To add Google Voice functionality in the future would make it a pretty killer app.

The bad news: We don’t know just how temporary this handicap is. So if you’re a regular Google Voice user, you’ll have to choose between either upgrading to the new version of Hangouts or hanging on to your Google Voice functionality and waiting for Google to make both products work in the future.

No timeline from Google on the upgraded integration between the products. For the sake of Voice loyalists, let’s hope it’s sooner rather than later.

Latest Video

View all videos »

Search »

The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald