For the past several versions, we’ve spotted Google Voice working on the ability to call emergency services. This feature is now official, but only for “work and school” G Suite accounts and not regular users.
As a voice over IP (VOIP) app, Google Voice cannot call emergency services due to the lack of accurate location triangulation to aid first responders. However, the G Suite edition of Voice (via Android Police) gets around this by allowing administrators to add a service address that will be sent to 911. This is according to a new Google Voice support page only available for G Suite accounts.
That is ideal for Voice numbers assigned to departments, but individual users that are still part of a work or school account can also set their service address. This option is available in Settings > Account > Service address, with changes registering within 48 hours.
Voice warns of the limitations, starting with traveling to other countries. The app will display a warning when you’re traveling abroad, with Google also creating an “emergency call warning label” to place near phones. Of course, Voice will not function during a loss of internet connectivity or power.
In the event of a power outage, loss of your internet connection, or a Google Voice service outage, you can still dial an emergency number if your phone has a dial tone. Any phone, including mobile phones without an account or service plan, can call emergency services and be connected to emergency responders.
Google Voice for G Suite launched at Cloud Next 2018 in July, and could exit beta in March 2019. The enterprise version features better user management, detailed reports, and call routing functionality. When provisioning and porting phone numbers, admins can assign to either individuals or entire departments.
More about Google Voice:
- Google Voice 2018.50 preps Material Theme, tweaks bottom bar notification indicator [APK Insight]
- Enterprise Google Voice for G Suite expected to enter general availability in March 2019
- Google Voice apparently testing video and audio in MMS messages
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