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Google Voice now lets you decide who goes to voicemail
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Google Voice now lets you decide who goes to voicemail

One of Google Voice’s best features is going away

It will soon stop forwarding your text messages to other numbers.

Steve Dent
S. Dent
March 10th, 2021
Google Voice now lets you decide who goes to voicemail |
Steve Dent/Engadget

A Google Voice number allows you to forward calls and messages from one number to all your other phones, something of a godsend if you have multiple devices. However, Google has announced that the “messages” part of that equation is about to go away. The Google Voice app now tells users that “message forwarding to linked numbers will stop soon because mobile carriers have started to block those messages,” according to Android Police.

Call forwarding is not affected, so you’ll still be able to use your Google Voice number to ring all your other phones. However, you’ll only be able to see your Google Voice messages on the Google Voice app located on your phone or the web. That could cause issues for notifications, as some wearables and other devices don’t support notifications directly from Google Voice, as Android Police noted. You’ll still be able to receive Voice message on your email address, however.

Google Voice is one of Google’s longest-running services, having started in 2009. However, it has received only sporadic updates and users live in fear that it might one day be discontinued like many other Google products. The search giant didn’t say when SMS forwarding would end, but you’ll likely want to make sure you have Voice installed on your Android smartphone(s) so you can still get notifications on the go. 

Engadget is a web magazine with obsessive daily coverage of everything new in gadgets and consumer electronics