Google said that its new integration of Google Voice into Gmail has proven instantly popular, with 1 million calls made in the first 24 hours the application was available. The total was announced in a message on the Google Twitter feed.
The figure reflects the high demand for integrated versions of popular Web-based e-mail and voice applications – particularly when provided by the world’s largest search provider. Google said last week that it has integrated the Web-based calling application into Gmail. Users of Gmail are now able to call any phone directly from the popular Web e-mail application.
Previously, Gmail users could conduct voice chats – essentially, voice calls from a Web interface – but both users had to be at their computers and logged onto Gmail. Now Google Voice can dial any phone number from the Web-mail application. Calls to the U.S. and Canada will be free for at least the rest of the year, while calls to other developed countries, like the U.K., France, Germany, China, and Japan, cost two cents per minute.
Launched in early 2009, Google Voice is based on the technology from GrandCentral, acquired by Google in 2007. The integration into Gmail, one of the world’s most popular free Web-based email applications, with hundreds of millions of users according to Google, could make Voice a much more significant threat to CSPs that offer many of the same services for a fee.