What you need to know
- Google Fi now works with Google Voice numbers, Google announced.
- Customers may now set-up call forwarding with their Fi numbers on Voice.
- The two services had remained separated for years.
Google now lets users use Google Fi and Google Voice on the same account, meaning that you'll be able to use and take advantage of Google's two telephony services without needing to choose. The company announced the change on Monday, so it should be fully rolled out to all customers by the time of posting.
Writing on the G Suite updates blog, Google notes:
Google Voice now works with Google Fi, so you can have separate Fi and Voice numbers on the same Google account. This means you can use different numbers for different purposes, like one for family and friends and one for work. When you set up forwarding in Google Voice or Google Fi, you'll receive calls from both numbers in one central place.
To recap, Google Fi is Google's own US-based mobile carrier. It piggybacks off the T-Mobile, *Sprint, and U.S. Cellular networks, switching to whichever one provides the best service. Voice isn't a real carrier so much as it is a Skype-like VOIP service. It gives you a virtual phone number which lets you make phone calls and send texts from any device as long as you have the Voice app installed.
While Google Fi and Google Voice would, in theory, have been expected to work together, that hasn't been the case for a while now. The divergence was attributed to some backend issue, meaning users would have to choose one or the other. With this change, that's all resolved.