We knew Google was getting close to rolling our phone calls with Google Home, and it looks like that roll out has officially begun.
Yesterday, we received an email detailing this new service coming to Google Home users across the board. Upon trying a call last night, we had no luck
As of this morning, however, the service is up and running.
It really took zero setup to make my first call. I spoke ‘Hey Google, call Gabriel’s mobile’ and Google Home began the process. Upon the first call, a couple instructions were given.
First, you can’t make emergency phone calls with this yet. Even on the second call, Google made sure to remind me of this.
Second, Google explains that you’ll need to tell it to hang up or touch the top of the device to end the call. That part seems straightforward, but I suppose you don’t want open-ended calls happening.
Other than that, as long as the number you want to call is in the contacts for your Google account, Google Home will place the call.
How You Appear To Others
This part is still a bit of a work in progress. Out of the box, you will show up as unlisted to those you call. Google claims that the ability to tie your phone number to your Google account for caller ID is coming, it is just not there quite yet.
The other options are Fi and Google Voice.
Going to your Google Home app and hitting the hamburger menu > More Settings > Calls > and you’ll see the options.
If you have a Google Fi account, you’ll be able to link it up there. Similarly, if you have a Google Voice account, you should see it listed there.
Fi users are a bit more sparse, but Google Voice is open to most. Using your Google Account, head over to voice.google.com and go through the much-improved setup to get your Google Voice account set up and ready. You can choose how much or how little to utilize this service but for our purposes today, it is simply enough to get the basic setup done.
Once you’ve done this, you can head back to your Google Home app and you’ll see your Google Voice account as an option for outgoing phone calls.
Keep in mind, most people won’t have your Google Voice number, but you can have people add it as a second number for your contact. While the name won’t come up initially for your phone calls, you at least will have a phone number appear on the recipient’s phone and you won’t look as much like a spammer when you place phone calls with Google Home.
I am excited about the more straightforward method of simply tying my phone number to my Google Account (just like it is in Allo) so Home can use that when I place calls. For now, this is a decent workaround and being able to place quick calls with Google Home is a very useful addition to its growing library of tricks.