Commentary

You Ask, Google Doesn't Answer

Google Mobile Blog

After inviting questions this week about all things mobile, Google has posted answers to some of the most popular queries on its mobile blog. Just turning to the Google search box would probably prove more illuminating than the company's attempt at providing human-powered responses.

Google said it received an overwhelming number of questions about Google Voice -- with three of the five top questions as voted on by participants about the free calling and messaging service. Google announced earlier this week that it has started allowing current users to invite friends and family to get Google Voice, and will continue to gradually expand such invitations.

What about availability outside the U.S.? Google said it plans to offer the service internationally, but "we don't have specifics to share at this time."

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And what about new Google Voice features? While evaluating additions like number portability, "we don't have anything to announce quite yet."

And when discussing why Google makes certain applications available only via a mobile browser rather than as native, downloadable apps, the company makes no mention of the controversy over Google Voice, which led the Federal Communications Commission to investigate why it was blocked from Apple's App Store. Or previously, why Google Latitude was released as a Web-only app for the iPhone-in both cases because raised Apple concerns that the Google programs would duplicate similar functions on the iPhone.

Instead, Google only talks about the "flexibility to build one app that can run in the browser on multiple phones."

And when it comes to which is the mobile phone of choice within the Googleplex, the answer is: Every phone!

"You'll see Googlers walking around campus carrying just about every phone under the stars, including multiple Android-powered devices, iPhone, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Nokia, etc." Considering Google would like to see Android on every type of handset made, that politically-correct response is hardly surprising.

Oh, well. How about a hint about what's in the product pipeline? "As we mentioned on the original Q & A page, we aren't able to provide forward-looking information on features or products..." Getting that kind of inside dope is what other blogs are for.

1 comment about "You Ask, Google Doesn't Answer".
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  1. Thomas Trumble from Jack Morton Worldwide, October 16, 2009 at 9:47 a.m.

    I'm glad to know that I wasn't the only one frustrated with Google's answers. There wasn't one answer that was illuminating or exciting in any way, just marketing cover-speak. Real answers to pressing questions or raving about something new would have been appreciated.

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