While Google's Voice application still does not allow VoIP calls on mobile, the latest update to the Android app does come with some changes that users are apt to love. In addition to new features arriving with the Android App update, calling is now accessible via the web version of Google Voice. The update – which appears to mostly build on the previous updates to the user interface – brings the app to version 5.0.149662255 and became available on the Google Play Store on March 16.
The latest version of the application now allows users to access the company's keyboard-embedded GIF feature. That means Google Voice can now be used to search, send, and receive all of the animated goodness GIFs have brought to the Internet, without ever having to leave the application. Since the feature is really just an activation of a Gboard feature, is is easily accessible by exactly the same method used in other apps. Users simply have to click the keyboard's emoji button, followed by the GIF button, type in a search term, and then select the desired GIF. The update also includes a new "do not disturb" feature. The feature is accessible through the in-app settings menu and does exactly what it sounds like it does. Notifications can be turned back on via a prominently shown toggle switch that appears over the user interface when do not disturb is turned on. Finally, entire conversations can now be deleted instead of just archived. The option has been placed in the three-dot overflow menu located in the upper-right corner inside any given conversation. Archiving is still usable as well but has been placed as a context menu option via a long-press on an individual conversation in the main conversation list. As always, this update also includes several unspecified bug fixes and performance improvements, so it should run much more smoothly now.
Although this particular update doesn't include the VoIP features many users have been looking for, the fact that the web version now supports voice calling may be an indicator that the ability to make calls over data connections via the Android app is coming soon. As with all things that "roll out," this update could take a few days to hit all devices. Although, in the meantime, you can download the latest version from the Google Play Store through the link below.