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Gmail offering free long distance calling to any landline/cell phone in the US/Canada

submitted on August 25, 2010 by elefanteau in "Sales / Promotions"

Gmail voice and video chat makes it easy to stay in touch with friends and family using your computer’s microphone and speakers. But until now, this required both people to be at their computers, signed into Gmail at the same time. Given that most of us don’t spend all day in front of our computers, we thought, “wouldn’t it be nice if you could call people directly on their phones?”

Starting today, you can call any phone right from Gmail.

Calls to the U.S. and Canada will be free for at least the rest of the year and calls to other countries will be billed at our very low rates. We worked hard to make these rates really cheap (see comparison table) with calls to the U.K., France, Germany, China, Japan—and many more countries—for as little as $0.02 per minute.

Dialing a phone number works just like a normal phone. Just click “Call phone” at the top of your chat list and dial a number or enter a contact’s name.

We’re rolling out this feature to U.S. based Gmail users over the next few days, so you’ll be ready to get started once “Call Phones” shows up in your chat list (you will need to install the voice and video plug-in if you haven’t already). If you’re using Google Apps for your school or business, then you won’t see it quite yet. We’re working on making this available more broadly - so stay tuned!

via the Gmail Blog:

Favorite (1)
  • 76464
    Posted by WhattaDealBlog on August 25, 2010 [reply] 0 0
    I see no big news here. Google has owned GoogleVoice/GrandCentral since 2007. This just lets you call from Gmail instead of the GoogleVoice site. And it makes you install software, which GoogleVoice does not.

    "Hey we added a calendar to our email service, now you don't have to load a different website" "Wow! Lets through a press conference to announce this to the world!"
  • 76580
    Posted by HouTex on August 26, 2010
    [reply] 1 0
    As part of its campaign to raise awareness for Google Voice, the company is getting creative. Sometime soon (likely before the end of the year), you’ll start seeing red retro style Google Voice phone booths in public venues, primarily at airports and college campuses. They're not just for show; they actually make phone calls. While the phone booths have very classic-looking phones in them, they are powered by Internet connections, not by land lines.
  • 76944
    Posted by HouTex on August 28, 2010
    [reply] 1 0
    Google tweeted that 1 million calls were made in the first 24 hours.

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