Alex Wiesen, a lead manager with Google’s Google Voice team, announced today that MMS support within Google Voice is now live for almost 100 North American based carriers. To the dismay of many people, the list of carriers that gave the go ahead to roll out this update does not include Verizon. Customers on AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile in the U.S. as well as Rogers, Bell Canada and Telus in Canada will have this new option available to them.
Sprint has let users on Google Voice to receive MMS messages through Gmail. T-Mobile is following suit today, adding the feature to their own network, and making Google Hangouts an even nicer looking option. Verizon and AT&T have not mentioned anything yet regarding an update.
Alex Wiesen, a Google employee, posted some information regarding the news on his Google+ profile.
We’re happy to announce this week another step towards improving MMS support for Google Voice. T-Mobile has allowed MMS messages from their users to be sent to Google Voice users. Similar to MMS messages from Sprint users, these messages will appear in Gmail, and you can be notified of the message via SMS. We continue to work with other carriers to broaden support for messaging and bring MMS to Hangouts. More good things are coming!
Sounds good, and we’re looking forward to seeing what other great features are brought to Google Hangouts in the future.
Source: +Alex Wiesen
Following up on their release of the new KitKat keyboard to Google Play earlier today, Google has also made the new Hangouts v2 available. The big news with this update is the incorporation of SMS/MMS messaging into the Hangouts platform. Some other improvements include support for a full set of built-in emojis, the ability to view animated GIFs, location sharing, and the ability to set a “mood” indicator ala Google+ for others to see.
Sick of waiting for the new Hangouts update that brings SMS and MMS integration? Well wait no more because it’s now available to download. This update is version 2.0.0.012 and gives you all the goodies including the ability to share your location. Just grab one of the download links and let us know what you think.
Download (1) or Download (2)
Some new screenshots suggest support for SMS messaging is close to being included in Google’s Hangouts messaging platform. Support for SMS messaging was one of the glaring omissions when the new Hangouts app was released earlier this year, though Google has always maintained their plan was to unify messaging protocols including SMS. As part of the support for text messaging, it appears Hangouts will also support MMS, although it is not clear whether users will be able to send videos as MMS using Hangouts. In addition to the SMS and MMS integration, the new version will also allow sharing of videos via the Hangouts platform.
On the heels of the public’s worries about the NSA and “big brother” checking in on us, Wickr has released its app to Android devices, as it was already available through the iOS App Store.
The application allows users to send encrypted messages anonymously and privately, and users can also select an option which will cause your message to be permanently deleted after a certain time period ends, much like Snapchat’s well-known feature.
Here are some words from Wickr’s co-founder, Robert Statica:
“Wickr not only offers the most secure form of correspondence but also helps protect our users’ contacts as we anonymize this information before it leaves the senders phone. Wickr does not collect any personally identifable information on users nor can we read any messages or contents sent through Wickr, therefore, no criminal or rogue government can take them from us.”
So if you’re truly worried about the government and those “big bad corporations” spying on you, it looks like Wickr is the perfect app for you. Hit the break for a video and the link to the app in the Play Store.
For almost a year, Sprint has had the monopoly on full Google Voice integration. That monopoly may be in jeopardy. In an interview with CNET, Vincent Paquet, Group Product Manager for Google Voice, said “We are having discussions with other carriers about this,” but declined to mention which carriers.
Google Voice is a service that provides users with online and on-device visual voicemail, cheaper international calls, personalized greetings, text transcription, and more. Sprint’s integration allows Sprint customers to either replace their Sprint number with their Google Voice number, or replace their Google Voice number with their Sprint number without incurring the usual $20 porting fee (see screenshot after the break). Either way, users get full access to all of Google Voice’s features.
The one thing holding me back from using my Google Voice account exclusively is the lack of MMS support. Sure, others with smartphones can just e-mail photos, but it never seems to work out that way. Yesterday, Google officially announced they have made a first step toward bringing this feature to its GV users. At the moment, only Sprint users are able to send MMS messages and to receive them you’ll have to turn on “enable text to e-mail forwarding” in your GV settings. Google is working on getting this to work with other carriers and getting the MMS messages to show up in the GV inbox, but this is a huge step forward. Most of us have been waiting for this since GV launched and may help to ditch using our main numbers all together. Stay tuned for more detailed information as it comes. Who’s excited?
Samsung’s cross platform messaging app ChatOn was just launched Friday morning and is available now in the Android Market. It was back in August when we first told you about ChatOn and that it is similar to RIM’s Blackberry BBM, Apple’s iMessage, and Goggle talk. Made to replace your cellphone’s factory SMS/MMS service, ChatOn is currently available on Android, Bada and Samsung feature phones with the promise of extending support to iOS and Blackberry in the near future.
The service only works on mobile devices right now but Samsung plans to offer a Web-based service allowing for users to chat via their PC’s as well. ChatOn users can talk one-to-one or in groups, share photos, videos, voice messages and contact information. Feature phones are limited to sending text, images, calendar appointments and contact sharing. Smartphone owners get an upgraded version allowing to comment on each others profiles, send multimedia messages and monitor their own “Interaction Rank” based on how active they are on the ChatOn network.
This new Sammy app only works on Android 2.2 or 2.3. Follow the links below for your free download and be sure to let us know what you think!
The HTC EVO Shift 4G is slated to get a software update that will fix the MMS bug that results in sporadic failures in sending MMS messages. This will bring the software version to 2.76.651.5. It appears this is the only fix, but it is needed because I am sure Grandma is wondering why all those pictures stopped coming.