[BCAB] Calls to most UK numbers (including mobiles) are now free using Google Home. Yes, free as in hands-free and cost-free.

Graham Page gpage at useit.plus.com
Wed Mar 7 17:41:15 GMT 2018


Hi Jackie.

I certainly  agree with you and if I implied that these devices are useless that is not what I meant.  What I did mean is that Amazon in particular does not seem to market the Echo as seriously as it should.

A big part of my work involves helping people who are recently blind and or who are new to technology to use things like the echo ad google home more effectively.  For many of these people, voice assistants have been hugely helpful.  Some do need convincing that these assistants are far more than just a gimic.  They aren't for everyone of course but in general when I have spoken to individuals and groups, I have found take up to be enthusiastic!

Cheers

Graham
-----Original Message-----
From: Jackie Brown [mailto:jackieannbrown62 at gmail.com] 
Sent: 07 March 2018 16:45
To: 'BCAB Discussion List'
Subject: Re: [BCAB] Calls to most UK numbers (including mobiles) are now free using Google Home. Yes, free as in hands-free and cost-free.

Hi Graham

All I did was open the Google Home app, go to I think Settings, then More Settings, and then to the button that mentions the calls.  I rang a friend, and was told that my number was showing as withheld.  So I went into the app again, put in my mobile number, and now it shows on the recipient's Caller ID as my mobile.  I tried doing this with the landline number, but the code it texts you to put in and activate it doesn't get sent to a landline, so I had to choose the mobile instead.

It works really well though, it's a game-changer for those people who live alone and perhaps have a fall where they can't get to a physical phone to call for help.  No you can't use the emergency services on Google Home, but you can call a friend or relative if that sort of thing happens.  For those who may think these devices are very gimmicky, I can only reiterate that they really do level the playing field for blind people I think.  For those who are not particularly PC or Internet savvy, you can get a lot out of these assistants without needing to have a lot of knowledge.

I agree that some of the Alexa skills are frankly crap, but weigh those against how useful either of these devices are and there's no contest, I'd really miss having them.

Kind regards,

Jackie Brown
Email: Jackieannbrown62 at gmail.com
Check out my website: www.thebrownsplace.info Follow me on Twitter: @thebrownsplace Skype name: thejackmate

-----Original Message-----
From: Graham Page [mailto:gpage at useit.plus.com]
Sent: 07 March 2018 16:35
To: 'BCAB Discussion List' <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] Calls to most UK numbers (including mobiles) are now free using Google Home. Yes, free as in hands-free and cost-free.

Hi Jonathan and all.

I am trying to get making calls work on my google home but I'm struggling a bit.

Part of the reason for this is that in the google home app, a lot of the buttons are, as far as I can see, mislabelled which is a bit careless of Google I would say.  There are multiple buttons called Options which does not help, so I have been unable to find the Personal   Results button described in the google help page that Jonathan  points us to.  I have pressed enter on the Iphone tab so I should be getting  instructions that relate to the Iphone rather than Android, but I'm wondering if the personal results tab might itself be mislabelled in the iphone implementation of google home?

Regards

Graham

-----Original Message-----
From: Jonathan H [mailto:digitaltoast at gmail.com]
Sent: 07 March 2018 10:03
To: BCAB Discussion List
Subject: [BCAB] Calls to most UK numbers (including mobiles) are now free using Google Home. Yes, free as in hands-free and cost-free.

I know that many people on this list are fans of the Google Home Mini (currently on sale for £39).

In which case you might be interested to know that, as of this morning, calls to most UK numbers (including mobiles) are now free using Google Home. Yes, free as in hands-free and cost-free.

I've just had 3 phone calls to and from landlines and mobiles to test this.

Details here: https://support.google.com/googlehome/answer/7363847?

FAQ item: "How much will calls cost? Calls to most U.K. numbers are free".

Just to double check that free really means free, someone who has never setup any kind of billing has just made a 10 minute call from their Home Mini to my mobile.

Sure, the quality is not exactly HD calling, but they were wandering all over their kitchen and I could hear every word. Delay was minimal and there was no echo.

I tried calling both by person in address book, and also just clearly speaking the number. You start with: "OK Google, make a phone call", and then either follow the prompts or just carry on by saying the person's name or number.

This is also being discussed over on HotUKDeals at
https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/free-calls-using-google-home-uk-2905356

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To find out more about BCAB and the benefits that membership can bring, please visit our website: https://www.bcab.org.uk/ Manage your subscription by logging in with your BCAB account details at : https://www.bcab.org.uk/user_mailman_register
Access the publicly searchable list archives at: https://lists.bcab.org.uk/pipermail/bcab/
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