Placeholder for thoughts on Google and social networks. More thoughts on blogs, Wave, email, facebook, friends, etc. Interesting thoughts in this slide deck from Paul Adams @ Google.
The Real Life Social Network v2
I’ve been using a single cell phone for voice communications for over seven years now. There’s one number to get me talking to you so the coordination of multiple phone numbers provided by Google Voice wasn’t that desirable. But I am a technology junkie so about a year ago I signed up with GrandCentral (which got bought by the Goog) anyway and promptly forgot about it.
Recently I’ve been using my Google Voice number as a “dump” account. Kind of like an alternate email address. I use it for signing up for white papers and mailing lists and handing it out to vendors. Two days ago I finally got a hit.
My cell phone rang early in the day with an out of state number I didn’t recognize. I answered it (I always answer my cell unless very busy) and was greeted with a voice telling me I have a call from “Blahblah Vendor” and I could press “1″ to take the call, “2″ to send it to voicemail, or “3″ to send to voicemail and listen in. So I pressed “2″ and hung up.
He didn’t leave a message (which would have been another cool test of the voice to text features) so I labelled his number as “Blahblah Vendor” put the contact in the Vendor category (i.e. straight to voicemail) and went on with my life. If it’s a vendor that I use I’ll put it in the Partner category that rings my work phone during business hours.
Yesterday I got a note on my door at home saying they couldn’t deliver a fruit basket. I pretty much guessed it was spam, but hey I like fruit, so I called out from my Google Voice number. It linked my cell to the number that was left but on their end the caller ID shows my GV number so the spammers (yeah no fruit for me) are more than welcome to call me back, although they’re in the Vendor category already.
The last thing is the ability to allow calls without giving out my number. Here’s a widget that will ask you for your number and will connect you to my cell without knowing my cell number or even my Google number. Give it a try if you feel like messing around.
All in all I’m pleased with the services. Unfortunately Google Voice isn’t accepting any new users for now, but when it does, I can recommend it for pretty much anyone. As long as you don’t care that Google knows every call that you make.
It seems pretty obvious if your entire business depends on the interpretation of your content through a particular type of application then you’d want to influence that application type. Thus Google has entered the “broswer wars” with Google Chrome. It ensures at a minimum that if Apple, Microsoft, and the Mozilla foundation all decided to change their browsers and wreck Google’s applications (all browser based) there’d still be one browser that works.
As for the broswer itself it seems fine with a very unencumbered interface, but I’m worried that they EULA may not be as “do no evil” as Google would like you to think.