Networking

Google close to gobbling phone call management firm GrandCentral


For $50 million, the GrandCentral deal (Forbes.com) does not immediately seem an extension to Google's mainstay search engine. The firm provides virtual calling service to its users with the option of using a single virtual number, which can be used to route calls to any or all of the user's phones or a voice mail account. This is a great concept, since switching and changing numbers and then conveying the new information to all of your contacts is such a pain.

So, where does GrandCentral figure in Google's grand plans? For one, it seems like a more active move into mobile space. Google hasn't made a major acquisition (financially) in the mobile space, unlike Microsoft that acquired TellMe, a voice recognition start-up. Also, with an ever expanding swath of Web applications, Google could easily integrate the service into its mail or chat offering (TechCrunch).

Also, being owned by Google implies that users can expect lower prices for the service. As for Google, the avenues for monetizing have never been bleak (ads, more ads... here, there, everywhere). It seems more like Google's gearing up for taking upon Skype, Microsoft, and many more in the telecom domain. Do you agree? Comment here.

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