Notice: Merging Of Google Voice And Hangouts Will Result Shutting Down All 3rd-Party Voice Apps In May 2014



The exact impact on Phone Amego is yet to be determined. Google has already rolled out incompatible changes to the unpublished Google Voice API. I understand the mobile version is still working, but I don’t know for how long. The information below on using Phone Amego with Google Voice is deprecated at this time [12-May-2014].

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If you have a Google Voice account, you can set Phone Amego to place calls through Google Voice so that your Google Voice number will appear as the caller to the person you are calling. This feature logs in to your Google Voice account over the web so it can work with any phone you have designated to receive calls via Google Voice including your office phone or iPhone. It does not require Bluetooth. When placing a call, Google Voice will first ring the local "Number to Ring" you specify (your phone number), and then call the outgoing number you selected from your Address Book.

To use Google Voice, you must setup your account information as shown below in the Google Voice Setup sheet (Main tab->Preferences->Use Google Voice->Setup...).

GV Setup

A "Number to Ring" is one of the numbers you have configured Google Voice to ring when somebody calls you on your Google Voice number. Phone Amego will retrieve these from your Google Voice account when you press login.

Number to Ring

Since you are using Google Voice, you probably have more than one forwarding number to ring such as your cell phone and your home phone. When placing a call, you must select which of your numbers you want Google Voice to ring. If there is more than one number, Phone Amego will add a "Number to Ring" submenu to the status bar making it easy to select the desired number without going through the Phone Amego window.

If you want to change which numbers Google Voice is configured to ring, you can press and hold Option while clicking on any "Number to Ring" from the menu. Phone Amego will open a Safari window, login to your Google Voice account, and display the "Phones" configuration page. From there you can select which phones you want to ring.

Your Google Voice password is stored in the default Keychain. If you upgrade to a new version of Phone Amego, the Keychain may ask you if you wish to allow the "new" application to access your Keychain. Phone Amego updates that are downloaded automatically are signed by the developer using a private key, so this is quite safe.

Expert Tip
When placing a call, Google Voice will normally ringback your local phone, and then ring the number you are calling after you have answered. If you use Google Voice with a speakerphone that can be answered from your Mac, Phone Amego will automatically answer the ringback call from Google Voice on the first ring so the call will appear to go through directly.

Google Chat Call Notification


Phone Amego does not provide call notification when the receiving point is Gmail in your web browser. Normally Phone Amego works with telephone devices that can be polled or provide notification for inbound calls. Google Voice does not provide a published notification mechanism and polling would be prohibitively expensive consuming many megabytes per day. The work around is to use Google Voice with a telephone device Phone Amego can monitor. One clever solution is the OBi100 Voice Service Bridge and VoIP adaptor. This allows you to place or receive Google Voice calls directly from an analog telephone handset or VoIP phone (no computer required).

Google Voice Chat (under construction)


Google has begun beta testing a chat service that allows you to place calls directly from your computer using a web browser plugin. To use this, walk through the setup steps in the GV Chat Setup box and then select GV Chat when placing a call. Phone Amego will use a WebKit window to access the chat feature within Gmail as if you had done it yourself from Safari. You must have a Gmail account that uses the same login as your Google Voice account.

Notice the second step in GV Chat Setup is to enable UI Scripting so that Phone Amego can click and type in a WebKit window the same as you would. This is normally done by selecting "Enable access for assistive devices" in “System Preferences -> Universal Access” (for 10.8 or lower), or “System Preferences -> Security & Privacy -> Privacy” where you would select Phone Amego explicitly (10.9 or later).

Disclaimer
While I expect to keep this feature available, Google Chat is currently in public beta, so it could be withdrawn or changed to no longer be compatible with Phone Amego.

Using Google Voice Directly from your Cell Phone


When you place a call using Phone Amego, your Google Voice number will appear as the caller to the person you are calling. When you do not have access to Phone Amego, you can achieve the same result by calling your Google Voice number, waiting for it to answer, pressing "2", and then dialing the number you want to call.

I programmed my GV number as speed dial 2 on my cell phone so I can press one button to call Google Voice, press 2 again, and then select a number from my phones address book I want to call. Depending on your cell phone, these details will vary.

Outbound Caller ID with Google Voice


Your outbound caller ID will normally not include your name when using Google Voice (since the address record of your calling line is held with Google). You can add your own listing at www.whitepages.com which will be visible in MSN whitepages and Phone Amego (if you enable using whitepages.com for reverse lookups).