Google Voice Improvements Lead to Faster Dialing
Google Voice is the service that Google acquired when it was GrandCentral. It allows you to receive a call on your Google Voice number, and have it directed to a number of phones, or straight to voicemail, depending on the caller. You can also call with that number, and have it display as your GV number, not your actual number. Access can be via the web, or an app, and when GV records a VM it will email or text message you.
In the past, Google said, Google Voice had to ping Google's servers to send them the number you were calling, and then make the call via an access number. You probasbly noticed this functionality when Google Voice dialed. No longer, with what Google calls "direct access numbers."
With direct access numbers, we assign a unique phone number to every person you call. This means that we no longer need to use your data network to access the server each time you make a call, so calls will be placed much faster.What you see now, when you use Google Voice, is the app giving you a status message about some unrecognized phone number (which is the access number), before it updates to show it is dialing the correct number.
It's faster, and not, of course, available as a native app on the iPhone (due to Apple's App Store policies). Remember, however, that although Google Voice recently opened to all out of closed beta, it's still only available in the U.S.