Google is operative tough to make phones obsolete.
The association wouldn’t acknowledge this. And they don’t wish me to contend it. They still have to make good with mobile phone carriers who support and sell Android phones.
In removing absolved of a phone as we know it, Google is both on a right side of story and also on your company’s side. The post-phone universe is a universe with higher-quality voice communication, softened confidence and telephony services that work softened than today’s communication apps.
What’s a smartphone, anyway?
Everybody’s articulate about the 10th anniversary of a iPhone, that initial shipped on Jun 29, 2007. That’s as good a place as any to disintegrate a smartphone and what it unequivocally is.
When a late Apple CEO and founder, Steve Jobs, introduced a iPhone on stage, he pronounced it was unequivocally 3 insubordinate products: iPod, mobile phone and internet communications device.
Jobs’ uncanny outline of a iPhone is distinct usually if we remember that during a time Apple had never mentioned a entrance App Store. (Jobs also done other less-than-accurate claims, such as that iPhone ran on OS X.)
Now we see smartphones clearly. Jobs’ “iPod” and “internet communicator” are usually apps. Currently there are thousands of apps on a Apple App Store that play song and capacitate communications over a internet. Overall, there are some-more than 2.2 million apps on a app store that do all kinds of things.
A smartphone isn’t 3 things, it’s dual things: a “phone” and a “computer.” The “phone” partial uses mobile carriers’ voice networks to hoop calls and content messages. The “computer” partial has an handling system, apps and a ability to bond to a internet around possibly a mobile broadband information network or around Wi-Fi.
Just as a “computer” partial of smartphones has consumed a digital camera, media player, radio, ebook reader, calculator, voice recorder, scanner, GPS, compass, flashlight, unstable diversion player, alarm clock, timer, residence book and dozens of other things, it will also assimilate a “phone” partial of your smartphone.
The leverage of a “computer” partial of a phone over a “phone” partial is many simply seen in a universe of messaging apps, that are in many respects vastly softened than content messaging. And, in any event, SMS and MMS messages now transport simply over Wi-Fi and don’t need a voice network anymore.
The solitary remaining justification for a continued existence of a “phone” partial of a smartphone is that a voice network is generally some-more arguable and aloft peculiarity than internet-based phone options.
But it’s usually a matter of time before Internet-based calls are softened than voice network calls. Google is perplexing to accelerate this process.
Project Fi is Google’s gateway drug to a post-phone world
Google this week announced G Suite harmony with Project Fi. (To pointer up, your G Suite director needs to capacitate Project Fi in a C-Panel.)
While good for tiny businesses or tiny departments, a underline isn’t prepared for enterprises — yet. The devise is singular to 6 users. But it does prove expected destiny enterprise-scale support for Fi on G Suite. More on that below.
Project Fi, if we recall, is Google’s mobile practical network user (MVNO), that uses a T-Mobile, Sprint and US Cellular networks. (It’s not transparent how a probable Sprint, T-Mobile partnership competence impact Fi users.)
Google Fi represents a insubordinate idea: phones that automatically switch both voice calls and information connectors between opposite carriers, and between voice networks and VoIP over WiFi. It does this regulating a purpose-built receiver structure and tradition SIM card, and special software. That special hardware is given we can entirely use Google Fi usually on Nexus 6, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Pixel and Pixel XL phones, nonetheless that lineup is about to change.
Google’s Project Fi Twitter comment this week betrothed a “new Fi-compatible device during a mid-tier cost from one of a partners after this year.” Google no longer sells a Nexus 6, and intends to proviso out support for a Nexus 6P and 5X subsequent year.
When Google Fi launched dual years ago, it gained a repute for charity clear, flexible, low pricing ($10 per GB) and easy, inexpensive general roaming (via T-Mobile). Fi enabled users to “pause” and “resume” both use and payment. Users like a energy and coherence of a mixed carriers and seamless Wi-Fi support. As a bonus, Wi-Fi calls are automatically routed by a secure Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Since that time, however, a universe has changed. Nowadays all carriers offer total and lower-cost plans, so consumers are souring on Project Fi.
Google’s launch of Project Fi lifted a apparent question: Why would Google wish to be a carrier? After all, Google is all about a internet, not a phone system.
The answer is clear: Google’s goal is to transition communication to a post-phone world.
Google offers a data-only Project Fi SIM label for free, as prolonged as you’re a Fi customer. That means we can sequence some-more SIM cards (up to 9 giveaway cards), and put them into your laptop, iPad, iPhone or any device, and use it usually for data, with a cost charged opposite a categorical account. These inclination are by clarification in a post-phone world, given with a giveaway information from a Fi SIM, they can usually make calls and send texts over a Internet; there’s no entrance to a mobile phone system.
The giveaway additional SIM plan enables Google to see how business use phones and tablets though entrance to a mobile voice network.
Part of Google’s goal is transitioning mobile phones off SMS and MMS and onto Rich Communication Services, or RCS. (Google’s communications chief, Nick Fox, tweeted final month that Google is operative to move RCS to Project Fi.)
The second partial is to midwife a birth of a post-phone world, starting with Voice over Long-Term Evolution (VoLTE).
These transitions competence be inevitable, even though Google’s involvement. But they also competence not.
Everything about telephony is complicated. Project Fi enables Google to try and exam and experiment, easing Fi users kindly and solemnly by a touch-and-go transition to a universe that doesn’t use a mobile voice networks.
The biggest eventuality in a post-phone transition is VoLTE.
VoLTE is a gateway drug to a post-phone world
In January, some Project Fi users beheld that their calls were being rubbed by VoLTE. So in February, Google sensitively announced that it had started to exam VoLTE “with a subset of Project Fi users.”
VoLTE is a rarely optimized and most softened behaving proceed than unchanging VoIP over LTE. And, for that matter, it offers softened peculiarity calls than today’s voice network calls.
Another outrageous advantage is that VoLTE enables video streaming, record send and other facilities directly from a phone’s local dialer. VoLTE is also a resolution to a stream order among US carriers between CDMA and GSM networks.
Let’s be transparent about what VoLTE on Fi represents. Right now, VoIP over Wi-Fi is a choice to regulating a wireless voice phone networks. VoLTE is apropos another alternative, regulating a carriers’ information networks instead of phone networks. (Note: Google is not charging users for information used around VoLTE.)
With Project Fi, Google can tweak and examination to figure out a best approach to gradually get some-more users creation and holding calls around Wi-Fi and VoLTE, and fewer around a wireless voice networks.
Interestingly, a whole Google Fi handoff intrigue works most softened with VoLTE than with a voice network. The reason is that while Fi can hand-off a call from WiFi to cellular, it can’t palm it behind from mobile to WiFi. So if you’re on a call and enter a building with clever WiFi though diseased cellular, a call will drop.
However, with data, a hand-off works in both directions. And given VoLTE is on a information network, we can go from WiFi to mobile broadband and behind again though dropping a call.
The Future of Fi is IP telephony for enterprises
Within dual years, we trust Project Fi will be accessible to companies of all sizes, including enterprises, as a core partial of G Suite.
It will give business draining corner telephony, including high-quality VoLTE calls provisioned by mixed carriers; WiFi-based calls — and a ability to seamlessly switch back-and-forth between them; and RCS, total information plans, tellurian roaming and more.
Eventually, Project Fi phones will miss usually one thing — a ability to bond to a mobile voice network.
Smartphones won’t be “phones” and “computers.” They will usually be “computers.” And all communication between them will transport over a internet.
The implications are immeasurable — softened quality, confidence and programmability for all business communication.
Yes, Google is out to kill a phone — and reinstate it with something most better.