Google expected to bring VoIP calling to gmail

Google is expected soon to integration VoIP into its popular gmail email and instant messaging client.

Google has slowly been positioning itself into the VoIP space with a few acquisitions, including most recently of the company Global IP Solutions Corporation (GIPS) that develops technologies that process and deliver voice and video over Internet protocol, namely for service providers and developers to integrate with their platforms.

On May 18, Google acquired GIPS for $68.2-million in an all cash deal that also moved the top employees of GIPS to the Google camp.

 Google already offers Google Voice, a currently free application that allows consumers to consolidate multiple phone numbers into one convenient number, and also offers premium features free of charge, including: transcribed voicemail through the Internet, text message forwarding to email, international VoIP calls, and conference calling and recording, among other features.

A current limitation of Google Voice is that in order for you to make and receive calls, you must pair Google Voice with an actual phone.

With a number of recent acquisitions in the VoIP space, all of that will change as the company has acquired the necessary infrastructure on the software-side that will remove the phone pairing limitation and even bring international VoIP calling directly from an Internet browser via HTML5.

Google Voice remains an invite only application, though you could request an invite from the Google Voice website.

Google Voice was firstly re-launched as Google Voice from Grand Central, the same name of the original company that Google acquired for more than $50-million.

Given millions of people rely on Google’s gmail service to connect, including by Internet calls and video, it makes sense for Google to finally integrate Google Voice with gmail that would offer a truly seamless way for users to connect straight from the cloud.

Additionally, Google is already internally testing a local-side VoIP application that is downloaded to your computer, similar to the Skype application, that allows making calls and participating in video conferencing and IM.

It is currently unclear as to when or if Google would release this app, especially all of the premium features actually work straight from an Internet browser.

Skype is currently the biggest VoIP service with more than 27-million user accounts.

Skype was acquired by eBay Inc for $2.6-billion in 2005, but the company admitted it significantly over paid for the company and subsequently announced a $900-million loss on impairment two years later.

If the biggest online VoIP provider isn’t as valuable, then why would Google be interested in getting into this space?

For Google, it is all about online advertising. More than 90-percent of Google’s gross revenue is generated from online advertising.

With the company offering VoIP services conveniently into its web apps, it is reasonable to expect it could further increase revenue from online advertising as more people flock to gmail that would offer the most advanced communication mediums all from one place.

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Ramy holds a Bachelor in Health Studies with honors in Health Management from York University in Toronto, Canada. He just returned to Toronto following a career opportunity teaching English in South Korea. Write to [email protected]
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  • VoIP software

    Good news, but I still do not have a Google voice account, too bad.

  • VoIP software

    Good news, but I still do not have a Google voice account, too bad.

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