Google Voice Seeks Beta Testers For New Wi-Fi Calling Functionality

Google Voice

Do roaming charges have you feeling down? Good news—Google has begun beta testing Wi-Fi calling on its Google Voice service for Android devices and on the web. As for iOS, Google says support is coming soon, but did not offer up a specific date. This is especially helpful for people who own more than one mobile device, such as a personal phone and a separate one for work.

Through the beta program, users can make calls over Wi-Fi on any compatible device that has Google Voice installed, or on the web. Not only could this potentially reduce roaming charges (if that is something you contend with), it can also help you keep in touch in places with poor cell service, provided there is a Wi-Fi connection accessible. And you can make calls from any device, not just your phone.

As this feature is still being developed, there are some known issues to be aware of. One of them is that Obihai devices will not work if you enable calling over Wi-Fi (incoming calls won't ring your Obihai phone). Google also says users are not able to use incoming call options such as call recording and call transfer when enabling calling over Wi-Fi and mobile data. And on PCs, Wi-Fi calling only works with Chrome—support is coming soon for Edge, Firefox, and Safari.

There are also some things to be aware of in regards to Bluetooth support. They include:
  • You won't be able to use the buttons on your Bluetooth device to answer calls or hang up.
  • Unable to use earpiece mode when a Bluetooth device is paired.
  • Depending on your Android version, your calls might drop if you try to switch between Bluetooth and speakerphone.
Beyond those caveats, you're good to go, if this is something you have been waiting for. If you are interested, hit this link and fill out the form, then update your Google Voice app. You'll receive an email with additional instructions when Wi-Fi calling is available.