One number for everything
First, you'll choose a new Google Voice number (and keep your existing numbers). Then, you can set up Google Voice to ring both your landline and your mobile phone. When someone calls your Google Voice number, both phones ring simultaneously. You choose which one you pick up. You can even answer the phone from your desktop computer when you’re logged into any Google service, such as Gmail or Google+, so Google Voice is especially convenient if you're already a big Google user.
I love having one phone number for all purposes, both personal and professional. Now people call just one number to reach me, and I choose to answer the phone most convenient for me. It’s super simple and easy.
Voicemail any way you like it
My biggest reason for switching to Google Voice (GV) was for its voicemail. I had a psychic block with that stutter-tone on my landline and never wanted to listen to messages. With GV, I’ve chosen to send all new voicemails to my email. I can see who the call is from and even get a transcription of the message. OK, I admit, the transcription can be comically mangled sometimes, but I can always get an idea of what the call is about, which I find very convenient.
I love voicemails in my email, because:
- I can file them away with related emails.
- I can forward them to someone else.
- I can easily see which messages I want to respond to first.
- I see important messages right away.
With GV, I text for free and don't need a paid mobile text plan. Also, I’ve set it up to send me texts in email (!), so I see texts arrive while sitting at my desk and type a response on a real keyboard. You can also see voicemails and texts with the GV widget in your browser.
You can use all or none of the features I’ve mentioned. You can customize it endlessly. Even if you don’t want to give everyone you know a new phone number for Google Voice, you can still benefit from some of these features. You can use the voicemail feature by simply forwarding all unanswered calls to the GV number. Your caller doesn’t know it’s happened, but you’ll get your voicemail through Google Voice. If you set up the landline and your mobile phone with this forwarding, all your voicemail will be in one place, which I love. Never worry about missing a message again.
For me, getting my voicemails and texts in email is very convenient. You can configure GV to do what works for you. Oh, and all this is FREE. What could be better?