Sprint and Google have already teased us about Google Voice integration on Android phones, and they were serious. We're getting numerous reports that the beta program has started, and a little bit of information comes with them. You'll have two options -- use your existing Sprint number to replace your Google Voice number, or use your Google Voice number to replace your Sprint number. The first option sounds very much like a carrier-supported version of porting your cell number to Google Voice, while the second option should provide the benefit of using Android's native (or a third party) SMS/MMS client. Both sound awful useful to me, and I can think of use case scenarios for each.
The drawback to enrolling in this testing is the lack of customer support. Instead of calling customer service, you'll be at the mercy of support via a Google Group. I guess that beats Google's python script help center, though. And to answer your next question -- no, there's no place to sign up, it looks like Sprint is cherry picking testers from their user base.
I expect we'll see this open to the public sooner rather than later, but right now I'm more curious about where this one is heading, and Sprint's new relationship with Google. Things could get very interesting here. The full text of the email testers are receiving is after the break. Thanks, Dave and riggsAndroid!
- The integrated service only works with a valid Sprint mobile number.
- For this early release, Sprint support channels will not be available for support, including Sprint Retail Stores, Sprint Customer Care, Sprint Telesales, Sprint Direct Sales Reps, etc.
- If you need support, please direct your questions/comments to voice-sprint-preview@
googlegroups.com with your Sprint or Google Voice number listed.
- If you use the Google Voice app on Android, you will need to log out and log back in to make sure the app stops using call interception.