Google Launching GrandCentral As Google Voice

Google is launching GrandCentral - that they purchased in 2007 for over $50 million - as Google Voice. The product is like Skype, a voice over IP service that offers free internet phone calls - "one phone number for all your phones for life" as GrandCentral noted.

The newly launched product will enable people to choose who's number gets forwarded to your cell phone or to voice mail. International calls will be for a small fee.

An interesting feature not offered by Skype is the ability to have your voicemail transcribed. The transcriptions can then be searched - a feature I am sure will get a lot of use.

Access to the new service should start soon - though apparently there are more than 15,000 people on the witing list as no new subscribers have been added since Google bought GrandCentral.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.