Despite harsh criticism from AT&T, which claims
is breaking federal telecommunications laws by blocking premium
phone numbers (such as phone sex lines), Google Voice is finally back
in action on the iPhone. Rather than try to wade through the
App Store submissions process again and likely be rejected, Google
this time opted for a web app, accessible via the iPhone's
The new HTML5 app is tailor-fit for the iPhone and
Palm smartphones (webOS), though it will work on any HTML5-ready
phone. Texting is easy, but calling has been partially
Basically, to call you still have to place a
call to a random Google number. This means that downsides are
that your call history will be filled with random numbers and you
will still pay for the minutes. The upsides, though, are that
you can use the service as a means to mask or screen calls on your
mobile, and you can get international calls at much lower rates.
try the new service out, go to voice.google.com
(you will need to make a Google Voice account before you can use the
site). The page might not be up yet, but refresh until it
For those thinking that web apps may be a new way to skirt
Apple's restrictions, it's important to keep in mind that its
much harder to develop a full-featured web app for the iPhone versus
a dedicated app, which can leverage Apple's APIs. Also, Apple
did likely give Google the okay on the web app, so there's no telling
whether Apple would try to block future rebel web apps.
Nonetheless, some see promise in this path.
quote: The upsides, though, are that you can use the service as a means to mask or screen calls on your mobile
quote: This is exactly why Microsoft doesn't put a browser on the Xbox 360. Flash games would kill XBLA sales.