Oh, Google, always so sneaky and humble. This go-round, they've quietly implemented support for mobile number porting into Google Voice, making the service even more convenient.

The process is fairly direct. After entering your mobile number, you agree to the various terms and conditions (it's nice that they list just 6 points that must be checked, rather than a 17-page agreement), and then enter in your account information. Once you've got everything all set, you simply check out, and they take over.


Anyone who's ever ported a number before knows that it's generally a pretty painless process; personally, when I ported my number from Verizon to Sprint, it literally took all of 5 minutes. Then again, they always leave themselves some wiggle-room - in this case, Google says the process could take up to 3 business days.

For those confused about Google Voice number porting, I'd like to clarify a few things:

  • Let's say your old favorite number that all your friends know is 123.
  • You port this number to Google Voice, which means your cell phone has to get a new number, which is now 456.
  • You set up forwarding from Google Voice to number 456, and now:
    • everyone who calls your favorite 123 number can still reach you
    • Google Voice handles and transcribes your SMS for free
    • you don't ever have to deal with porting a number again or potentially losing it while moving (your new carrier will only let you port a number if the old area code matches your current one)
    • life is good
  • You can now set your Google Voice setting on your Android phone to always use Voice for dialing, which means everyone you call will still see your old number 123. This is not possible on a non-Android phone, like iPhone, as far as I know - Android's flexibility rocks quite hard in this case.

Not bad, Google, not bad at all.

[Source: Google Voice via Engadget]

Aaron Gingrich
Aaron is a geek who has always had a passion for technology. When not working or writing, he can be found spending time with his family, playing a game, or watching a movie.

  • http://jeftek.com Jef

    Does Google Voice support sending/receiving MMS messages now?

    If not, does the MMS sender to the GV # get notified you can't receive them?

  • http://www.archimage.co.nz pabloNZ

    Damnit Google, hear the pleas of us non-US masses who want to have some of the awesome. Specifically New Zealand in my case.

  • Denbo

    I dunno. It isn't quite the cutting edge of creepy I expected from Google. Now if they just did this automatically with every Android phone without asking us... well that would be more like it.

  • The guy next to calvin

    Good one Google, good one

  • http://DigitalFocusMarketing.com Duane

    As quickly as the opened it up, they closed it. They only had it open for a few hours to test their processes. Official word is that it is coming very soon. Can somebody define 'soon' for me?

  • Sandeep

    Soon/couple of weeks (by the way Google seems to be handling it) = more than a month and still nothing official. Like the Gingerbread release to Nexus One users.

    Irritated? Yeah me too.

    This is one area Apple does good. They demo a new OS, announce that it will be available on XXXXX day and it is available.

  • edlong

    @Sandeep Then it's probably best that you buy Apple.

  • Bill

    Few months ago I ported my AT&T mobile number to Google for $20.00 and all is fine, but now I want to port that number to Straight Talk mobile. ST says it can't do that. Do you know if it is possible to port from Google to ST?