Google adds back the ability to make calls from Gmail, with new experience. Even better “calls to the US and Canada are now free from all countries where Hangouts calling is available,” informs Google. And international rates remain super, super low.
To make a call from Hangouts, just look for the new phone icon in Gmail, or for the new “Call a phone” menu item in Google+ and the Chrome extension.
Today’s launch also improves the desktop calling experience in a number of ways. For example:
- “you can add now multiple phone numbers and video participants to the same call;
- you can also now play sound effects (like applause or laughter) with the Google Effects app,” informs google.
Of course, if you haven’t yet tried Hangouts in Gmail, you can always click your profile photo in the chat list and select “Try the new Hangouts.”
Google also confirmed that Hangouts is designed to be the future of Google Voice, and “making and receiving calls is just the beginning.” “Stay tuned for future updates.”
Google added a new “notes” feature to Google Voice search app. “Try getting those to-do’s out of your head by leaving yourself notes on your Android device with Google Voice Search,” says google.
Just tap the microphone on the Google Search App and say for example “Note to self: buy birthday card for Dad.” You can choose to have the reminder.