Google Voice and Google Reader: Communicating Is Easy
Article by George Norman
On 12 Mar 2009
Mountain View search engine giant Google has announced the availability of a Google Voice preview release that should aid you in managing voice communications, and has also announced new commenting functionality in Google Reader. And since we are on the topic of socializing, you should also know that Facebook revamped their home page so that it would offer you greater ease of use and enhanced functionality.

Google Voice will initially be made available to GrandCentral users – it makes sense, since Google acquired the service back in 2007 and based their Google Voice application on it. On top of GrandCentral’s existing functionality (GrandCentral phone number that redirects incoming calls to all your other phone numbers at once, call screening, web access for voicemail management, and the traditional means of checking your voicemail), Google has added one new feature – voicemail transcription (like you get in Skype).

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“We've just started to release a preview of Google Voice, an application that helps you better manage your voice communications. The new application improves the way you use your phone. You can get transcripts of your voicemail and archive and search all of the SMS text messages you send and receive. You can also use the service to make low-priced international calls and easily access Goog-411 directory assistance,” explained Google Voice Product Managers, Craig Walker, Vincent Paquet, and Wesley Chan.

The Google team has also been busy with the online feed aggregator, Google Reader. In order to encourage people to discover and share new content, Google Reader now features commenting functionality. What this means is that by simply pressing the “Add Comment” you can state your opinions on whatever one of your contacts has shared. All the items that have received comments are displayed in Friend’s shared items -> Comment view.

Software Engineer, Dolapo Falola comments: “Google Reader makes it easy to read and share your favorite articles, blogs, and videos. In the last year, we've added new features to Reader like the ability to choose friends and share items with a note. But it did occur to us that the sharing process was incomplete -- there was no way to have conversations with friends about all those shared items. That's why we're excited to announce that starting today, your friends will be able to reply to shared items with comments, allowing you to have conversations with your friends right inside Reader. Comments can only be seen by friends of the person who originally shared the item.”



Tags: Google, Google Voice, Google Reader
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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