May 14 AT 2:39 PM Sean Riley 22 Comments

Google Voice invites are now available for all students

Perhaps not the most significant Google Blog post of the day, but if you’ve got an .edu email address and an Android phone then this is definitely something you are going to want to take a look at.

Google Voice is a fantastic service and if you have an Android phone you should definitely be using it. The one big problem is that it remains invite only, but starting today students are getting moved to the front of the invite line.

You can sign up right now by just entering your .edu email address right here. There will probably still be a bit of a wait after you sign up, so don’t worry if you don’t get anything immediately.

Here’s a quick list of notable features of Google Voice for mobile followed by Google’s own video on the Android app. Additional information on Google Voice itself can be found here.

  • One number – You can select a number when you first sign up and this is your Google Voice number which you can receive and make calls or text messages from.
  • Voicemail transcription – One of the best (and sometimes funniest) features is that it will do its best to transcribe and send any new voicemail messages to you via email.
  • Free text messages – Much as it sounds, you can send and receive text messages for free using the Google Voice app. Check here for a description of how to set this up to be sure they are free.
  • Cheap international calls – Make low-priced international calls directly from your phone.
  • Integration – Google Voice integrates with your Google Contacts.
  • Custom greetings – You can set up a special greeting for different callers.

Like most things Google this is a free service so if you have an .edu email address just trust me that you want to head over right now and sign up.

Source: Google Voice Blog

Sean has been with Android and Me for over 8 years and covering mobile for the last 9. He occasionally muses about gadgets and tech outside of the Android universe at Techgasms.

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  • http://Website jaysson

    I’m kind of confused. If i have unlimited text and data, and I never go over my voice minutes, how is this useful to me? I feel like I want to use it, but I”m not sure what most people use it for.

    • Sean Riley

      I think the voicemail transcription alone is probably worth it. Once you have the Google Voice app installed on your phone you can sort through calls visually and of course the transcribed versions are there so you can just take a peak at what someone was calling about rather than having to listen to their whole message. This is basically a better and free version of what Verizon calls Visual Voicemail and charges 2.99 or something a month for.

      The Google Voice number itself is cool too. One example of how that is useful is that last week I accidentally left my cell phone on the charger at home. So when I got to my office I just signed into my Google Voice account and routed my number to my office phone so my calls came through to me there.

      Even if you don’t see how you will use it at the moment I would still recommend signing up, but maybe some other folks will chime in with how they use it as well.

    • http://Website KHiD WHiTE

      Its Somewhat like having Skype Mobile, Web Camera Chat Ect, and you also get a local google number which will allow you to txt for over and make and rec phone calls. If you ever meet someone and your unsure about giving them your mobile number you can just give them your google number. But download google voice to your P.C and give it a try

    • http://Website Philip

      Why do people want Google Voice if they have unlimited services. Simple can we say “oohhhh pretty?”

      • http://Website Eurotrash

        Can you not read? Google voice is awesome in many ways. I have unlimited everything also but it is still cool to not have to call you VM and actually have to sit and listen to a voicemail when you can simply open an app on your phone and see a transcription of the VM. Even if the transcription isn’t clear you still don’t have to call your VM you just hit the play button and the Google Voice will play the actual recording ? How is that not useful? Another cool feature is that You can set up a differen VM message for every single contact. Or you can divide contacts into groups and have a VM Message that the people in the “Business” group hear and another VM message that “Friends” hear ? HOW The F$%^ is that not useful …. Plus you can screen calls ….you can….oh jesus I give up …. idiots online …..

        • Canterrain

          Honestly I can read and iI still don’t see the benefit.

          I have all the minutes I could ever need. So the big feature left is not calling voice mail and transcripts. But I have visual voicemail which means I can listen pause rewind replay and delete my voicemail all without calling. It works like ann app.

          And transcripts wouldn’t be that useful to me. I don’t get that many voice mails, so..

          • Maliek

            The biggest use I see for Google Voice if you’ve already got “Unlimited Everything” is the phone number. Having one phone number for the rest of your life, no matter how many phones, service plans, etc you go through is a Godsend to me.

          • Canterrain

            Now see that is the first really big benefit I’ve heard that could apply to me.

            Don’t get me wrong, I still see it as not being all that useful -to me- (probably plenty of people who would find it useful), but that doesn’t mean I’ll write it off as a useless app without even trying it or something. Mebbe I’ll score an invite and at least give it a run through to see how well it is built. (Not that I have doubts there, being a google app)

      • http://Website Piccolo

        Not only does it allow you to give out a legitimate phone number that rings to your phone, but it also gives you a way to screen callers without having to reveal your personal number. Aside from that and many other features, it also allows you to send international text messages for free.

  • http://Website Ben

    I use it to text and call my friends in canada. for free! (apparently you can only text and call canada besides inside the US for free with google voice)

  • http://Website Yathushan

    How bout students in the UK? is it possible for them as well? Or is this still a US exclusive?

    • Sean Riley

      Sorry about that, Google Voice is still a US only thing at the moment.

  • http://Website Maxomus

    I have unlimited everything as well, but still use tend to use GV more & my actual number pretty much is only used for family & some close friends and like everyone else, features, screening, routing calls & contacts & prefer reading my vm rather than calling in… and you don’t always have to have your phone on you if you want to check your messages or send a text or even call if you have a sip set up or something…

  • juni

    Nice one for all students like me …………….it will definitely help us ……….yahoooo

  • http://Website Topher

    For all you not ‘seeing the use’, beyond what is mentioned above, having a second phone number on your cell is super handy. I can call to/from my google voice number right from my cell, -exactly- like you normally would.

    In addition I can forward, redirect, etc callers, groups of callers, specific people, etc depending on the time of day or even my location.

    When I have my tmobile phone on me, my number rings that phone. When I’ve my verizon phone, my number rings on that phone. It’s bliss, with phone numbers.

  • http://Website Chris Wiley

    If you start your own business this could be handy as well. Put your GV number on your business card instead of your person cell number, etc. I can see the use in having two numbers on one phone.

    Transcriptions are great, especially if there’s a voicemail that you’d wish to share with someone, like if mom calls and gives an update but resorted to VM because I wasn’t available. I can easily send this to my siblings. This could come in handy for many non-personal situations. Even business.

    Not to mention it’s cheaper for international calling. You can have unlimited everything, like I do, but I still got destroyed on my bill when I was on a boat in the middle of the pacific. GV would have helped that situation tremendously.

    That and what Topher mentioned. :P

    I’ve signed up with my student information. I’ll update when I hear something back on it and any other information I acquire during the process.

  • http://Website Wendy

    I’m excited about the possibilities with this, but I’m confused about one thing. Do you have to change your phone number?

  • http://Website Jeff

    No. it doesn’t have to replace your current number. You are given an additional number which basically routes all calls/texts/etc through Google when that number is used. You can use it for calls and vm or just vm. I use it so my personal and work cells go to the same vm and I receive everything in the same place. The transciptions are nice too; even though they are typically inaccurate to an extent.

  • http://Website doctajay

    has anyone who has signed up with their student account gotten an invite yet? Not me.

  • http://Website Chris

    Im pissed my college email address has a .net at the end but it is gmail!

  • http://Website Karina

    Well I signed up yesterday afternoon and have yet to receive an invite through my college email. It said I would receive one in the next 24 hours or whatever and to sit tight. Can’t wait.

  • Reggie Morsberger

    Whats up this is somewhat of off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding expertise so I wanted to get advice from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly appreciated!