Google Hangouts for iOS Can Now Make FREE Phone Calls to Canada, USA

Google Hangouts for iOS has received a major update to allow users to make free phone calls to numbers in Canada and the USA–for free. Users can also receive Google Voice calls as well.

If you don’t have a long distance calling plan for Canada or USA calling, this means you can now use your data or WiFi connection to make free calls. We tested the feature tonight and the quality was very good and passable (our caller ID showed up as ‘unknown’ though, since the assigning of Google Voice numbers is still limited to the USA).

Users can use their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to call phone numbers. Also new is the ability to send and receive animated GIFs.

What’s New in Version 1.3.0
– See which of your friends is using Hangouts, and who can be reached right now

– Call phone numbers from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch (free to the US and Canada)

– Make and receive calls using your Google Voice number

– Send and receive animated GIFs that play inline

– Hangouts will temporarily turn down your music (instead of stopping it) when you receive an incoming message

How to initiate a free phone call? Just tap the phone icon on the main screen in the top right corner:

Photo 2 Photo 1

As you enter in a number Google Hangouts will let you know the phone call will be free:

Photo 3 Photo 4

Click here to download Google Hangouts for iOS–it’s free. Let us know how you’re enjoying your free phone calls!

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter, and @iPhoneinCanada, and on Google+.

  • Dwy

    Downloaded the app, when I tried to log in I got a message that the app isn’t available for use through my data provider (Rogers).

  • Bored

    Are you surprised?!

  • George

    It works through wifi.

  • George

    I’m on Rogers and it works 100% on data.

  • Chrome262

    Tried it out. You show up as anonymous, didn’t make a long enough call, but it sounded ok. I guess it’s good if u want to prank call. But with no id people won’t pick up

  • ScooterCat63

    This app is very similar to Talkatone, which is not a Google company, but does use your Google account info to set-up app functionality. It seems that both apps also suffer a similar problem, because we’re in Canada, the only way to receive calls is if both parties are using the same app. One major difference between Talkatone and Hangouts is that Talkatone gives an option to connect to your Facebook account, while Hangouts, of course, uses Google’s social network. Given that Google is trying very hard to get its own social networking happening and is in direct competition with Facebook, I wonder if this update to the Hangouts app will lead Google to buyout Talkatone.

    Google Voice Account only available in the USA
    https://support.google.com/voice/answer/3205713?hl=en&ref_topic=1708123

    Talkatone for Canadians
    http://support.talkatone.com/customer/portal/articles/1075131-talkatone-for-canadians

  • Arcsvibe

    Downloading it now! Thanks for the heads up.

  • Damian W

    Why my google hangouts number appers as unknown?

  • Nick

    Since there is no actual number associated with it. If you wanted to associate a number and receive calls you can hook it up with google voice 🙂

  • Damian W

    i think google voice does not work in canada, or it is just a paid option. I am currently using other texting apps, which give me a number and i can text and call for free. Hopefully Hangouts will do the same.

  • Nick

    Hangouts still works in Canada, you just won’t be able to attach a google voice number to it, yet. Hopefully Google does something about that soon

  • Normally your caller id would be your free google voice number. But google voice is USA only still.

  • Erik Kappel

    Been waiting a looong time for that to happen.

  • Erik Kappel

    Tested this out on both iPhone and iPad over wifi, worked like a charm. The person I was calling said my voice was much clearer than when I called her through a usual phone call, and her voice was definitely more clear on my end too! Very cool!

  • jabohn

    What’s the difference between calls through this app and directly with the Google Voice app? Wouldn’t GV be a bit more direct?

  • ?suttonmontreal

    i been using Talkatone for about 2 years now in Montreal and I’m able to make and receive calls but what i did was setup of google voice number using a VPN which change my IP address to a us IP
    so after that i can use it on Talkatone
    now i been testing it on hangouts and i still can use it the same as you say that this is similar to Talkatone
    all i can say is that is a great option to have free long distance in Canada
    (note that to setup a google voice number they will ask you another us number to receive a text and confirm a code, but you can use a friend number or any other app that gives you a us number. in my case i have a US Magic Jack number so i use it for that )

  • ScooterCat63

    It never occurred time to use a VPN to set-up a phone number for Talkatone. Brilliant! Thanks. Talkatone is a useful app. I use it a lot, especially when I’m calling numbers that aren’t part of My 10.

  • ?suttonmontreal

    no need for VPN in Talkatone but whenever you do a setup of a google voice number to use it in talkatone as a caller ID you will need a VPN from Canada (only for setup)

  • Jorge O.

    It want’s to charge me 6c/min to make a call