Google Snaps Up Gizmo5, Could Rival Skype In VoIP Game

It may sound somewhat wild, but Google could very well take over the world. We know, you're thinking we're crazy, but the evidence is mounting. It has taken over the search market (and improved usability all the while), it has crafted its own mobile operating system (one that actually rivals the mighty iPhone), it's currently developing its own computer operating system in Chrome OS, it already has a Chrome web browser that's easily better than Microsoft's Internet Explorer, it has a chat tool that may trump Campfire in Google Wave, and now it's fixing to replace your phone company. Who's laughing now, right?

Google's GrandCentral (and Google Voice) has already taken the talkative generation by storm, providing forwarding numbers and the like for anyone who applies and gets accepted. Evidently that's just not good enough, as now it looks like Google has Skype in its sights as the next major company it hopes to challenge. Skype has long since been the go-to company for VoIP calling, and by and large, it's a great application. But Google has just picked up a small outfit that was doing VoIP long before VoIP was a buzzword: Gizmo5. Gizmo5 provides Internet-based calling solutions for mobile phones and PCs, and while Google isn't disclosing the purchase price nor any official plans for the acquisition, it has noted that it will be bringing some Gizmo5 employees on staff in order "bring more useful features to Google Voice."

Just think about it: if Google can really nail VoIP, and somehow provide it free of charge like it does with most of its services, the phone companies could be in trouble. Granted, phone companies are already seeing lots of disconnections as more and more people go to cellphone-only setups, but if Google gets in the game, you know it'll get even more interesting--and fast.