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Google Voice tipped to end in the next few months

It seems as though just yesterday Google and smartphone users were lobbying for Apple to allow Google Voice into the App Store – what a difference a few years makes.
A report is now circulating that Google is preparing to kill off Google Voice and integrate similar capabilities into the G+ Hangouts app.
Google has been working hard to get more people to use Hangouts, so eliminating Google Voice would be no real surprise. The voice service will be integrated into both the iOS and Android apps allowing the users to make voice calls as they would with the web version of the software.

Users will still be able to keep their current Google Voice their own numbers, although we aren’t yet sure if all the intricate features and capabilities of the service will make the cut.
9to5Google reckons that Google could make an official announcement at this year’s Google I/O conference.

Source: 9to5Google

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RE: Why?
By tonyswash on 3/19/2014 4:39:17 PM , Rating: 5
I have found a couple of services of Google's valuable outside of search, but I don't want to sign up to a social-networking service just to use them. Google Voice was one of them.

Google+ only looks like a social networking system but it's actually far more strategic than that. Google's entire business model is based on collecting data from what everyone is doing everywhere on the web (and beyond) and offering that data to purchasers of advertising. That's the only thing that Google makes any money from, it's what finances everything else they do. Collecting comprehensive and high quality data on who is using their services is absolutely central to the Google business model.

By building an obligatory Google+ sign in deep in to ever more of it's services Google can collect much more data about specific individuals and the ability to cross references your activity in different services (what you watch on Youtube, what you search for, what topics are in your emails, etc) greatly enhances the value of that data . It's why a Google+ sign is now part of doing almost anything (certainly anything of substance) in any of Google's services, it's why it keeps trying to get you to use your real name. Google wants everybody bundled up neatly into single IDs so that it can track what you are doing in a more systematic way.

I initially thought Google+ was just a desperate attempt to chase Facebook but it's actually much than that and is the result of some very clever strategic thinking.

"We’re Apple. We don’t wear suits. We don’t even own suits." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs
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