Now, make phone calls from your Gmail account

Posted: August 26, 2010 in Google, Internet, Mobile
Tags: , , , , , ,

Google will now facilitate Gmail users to call telephones directly from their email. It will be in direct competition with Skype and traditional operators like AT&T and Verizon Communications.

After offering computer-to-computer voice and video chat services, Google will now allow calls to home phones and mobile phones directly from Gmail. Calls to the U.S. and Canadian phones from Gmail would be free of cost this year and for calls to other countries, there would be certain charges fixed at a lower rate. Google said calls to Britain, France, Germany, China and Japan would be as low as 2 cents per minute.

According to analysts, this service would likely be a bigger competitive threat to services like Skype’s than to traditional phone companies, which have already been cutting their call prices in recent years in response to stiff competition.

“This is a risk to Skype. It’s a competitor with a pretty good brand name,” said Hudson Square analyst Todd Rethemeier. Like Skype, Rethemeier said the Google service will likely be much more popular among U.S. consumers making international calls, than among people calling friends inside the country.

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