I love new toys

Google acquired Grand Central recently and now they're Beta testing the service and it's free. Free! FREE! Here's what they have to say:

Google Acquires GrandCentral Communications

GrandCentral is joining Google. We're excited about this. Being part of Google will helps us make our vision of improved voice communications one step closer to reality and bring innovative communications services to millions of users around the world. This will also ensure that your GrandCentral number is here for the long run, and that no matter how often you move, change jobs or phone providers, everyone can still reach you through the same phone number.

We have put together below a quick Q&A about the acquisition, but as always, we encourage our users to leave us some feedback through the feedback button above.

Craig Walker & Vincent Paquet, GrandCentral Founders

And speaking of cost, a matter near and dear to my heart, here's what Google has to say about it:

Our current plan is to offer a free service with as many features as we can, and later add paid features at a very affordable price.

During beta, all available features are free, including calls to toll-free and other numbers initiated from the GrandCentral website.

If you want to know what this service does, here's a blurb about that too:

These phone plans give customers a local GrandCentral telephone number that will allow them to answer all of their calls from any of their existing phones (cell, work, home, etc.), enable access to voicemail by phone, email, or online, and provide unprecedented control over inbound calls and other unique features. <>

GrandCentral solves the mess of modern communications by giving customers one phone number that reaches them at any device they choose and gives unprecedented control over how calls are handled. With GrandCentral, customers can control which phones ring, which ring-back tones are played and which voicemail greetings are heard, all based on who is calling. GrandCentral customers can also ListenInTM on voicemail messages, record calls at the touch of a button and seamlessly switch calls between any of their phones. From now on, customers will never miss a call they want to take, or take a call they want to miss. The service works with all existing phones and service providers.

The button below is an example of what you click to engage the service, this one is just a picture linked to GrandCentral, the one loaded up with my contract info is in my sidebar. Give me a call. I dare you! (by the by, it'll go to voicemail not my actual phone since I don't want to talk to everyone :-p but at least you'll know what my voice sounds like)


Nina said…
Thank you for posting this. If this is what it appears to be, it will give me unprecedented access to my students without having to give them all my cell phone number. Very exciting.
utenzi said…
Woo-hoo. I'm all about unprecedented access to students, Nina. Exciting, indeed.
Bob-kat said…
This sounds very similar to Skype? I'll have to check it out and see if it is available in the UK.
Carmi said…
OK, this is neat. Thanks for this entry...I'll log in and check it out.

Hope all else is well with you!
Carmi said…
Belay that...it looks like it's U.S.-only for now. Sigh. Canadians always get shut out of cool stuff like this!

Maybe it's time to move :)
Diane Mandy said…
Awww, Utenzi. You're so cutting edge!
Shephard said…
That's pretty cool... but alas, my brain isn't currently accepting any more technology or new-fangled services. I'll have to wait til I have some free-space.

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