The Blackberry used to be the only option for corporate mobile email. Its proprietary push email capability works great on millions of work phones around the world. Google Sync is a relatively new product that is bringing that same feature to iPhones, Andoid phones and Windows Mobile devices with its Gmail service. This is not putting Blackberry’s enterprise email standard rule in potential jeopardy.
Google’s always-on connection, called Google Sync, has been allowing quick syncing of contacts and calendars to these devices for months. But by adding Gmail to the array makes Google’s enterprise-level Apps suite an even more tempting alternative to Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Notes. Google Sync now allows you to set up your Gmail account as an Exchange account in Apple Mail, mimicing the always-on service Exchange is great for. Since Mail can run in the background of the phone, messages stream in constantly. Check out Google’s tutorial for non-enterprise users.
This is also a fairly new Google service that is focusing on the telecommunications market. The service provisions a U.S. phone number, chosen by the user from available numbers in selected area codes, free of charge to each user account. Inbound calls to this number are forwarded to other phone numbers of the subscriber. Outbound calls may be placed to domestic and international destinations from any of a user’s configured telephones, or from a web-based application. Inbound and domestic outbound calls (including calls to Canada) are free of charge, while international calls are billed according to a schedule posted on the Google Voice website.
The service is configured and maintained by the user in a web-based application, styled after Google’s e-mail service, Gmail. Users must have an established U.S. telephone service to use Google Voice. Users must configure this and optionally, additional phone numbers that ring simultaneously when the Google Voice number receives a call. The user may answer and receive the call on any of the ringing phones. Google Voice provides additional features such as voicemail, call history, conference calling, call screening, blocking of unwanted calls, and voice transcription to text of voicemail messages. Received calls may be moved between configured telephones during a call.
SFGate website posted an interesting article on the application with a real users view point, talking about the good and bad.