Google’s new Hangouts messaging service is going to replace the company’s old Google Talk service, with an always on communication and support for images, video calling, emojis and more. As we’ve seen previously, you can enable the new Hangouts in Gmail easily. But when you upgrade the Google Talk service with Hangouts, then you lose some features such as ability to type a status, and more importantly, the ability to place or receive Google Voice calls right from Gmail’s interface.
Users in Google’s support forum first reported the disappearance of Google Voice, once upgraded to Hangouts, and we at ValueWalk too can confirm this. Now that this feature is gone, the only way to use Google Voice is from the web app which is accessible from https://www.google.com/voice.
Google had added the Voice feature to Gmail back in 2010, and since then, many users loved this feature as it enables users to place outgoing calls from their computer. On top of that, Google has always offered users to call from Gmail to phone numbers within the US for free, without charging even a penny. Also Google Voice charges are really cheap, compared to some of the competitors.
But those who are complaining about the loss of Google Voice can still revert back to the old Google Talk service in Gmail. This can be done by clicking on your thumbnail image and then on “Revert to old chat.” This will restore the ability to start Google Voice calls on your computer and that too, without having to route the call to another phone before it connects.
At this time, we don’t know if Google is really thinking to bring back the Google Voice to Hangouts, but we just hope that they do so. Google is also planning to bring SMS integration to Hangouts, and it seems that the search giant has some really big plans for its new unified messaging application – Hangouts. For now, if you want to place free calls from Google Talk, then we would advise you not to upgrade to Hangouts and wait for some time.
We’ll keep you informed if we hear anything about this from Google.