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How To's
How to Make Free Phone Calls with your Gmail Account

Wirefly Learn » How To's

September 13th, 2010


If you’re a frequent Gmail user, chances are you’ve already noticed a new phone-like icon hanging out around the chat area on the left side of your Gmail window. If you’re not already a Gmail user, getting a free account is a quick and easy process — and you can even opt to pull your existing email accounts into Gmail. Either way, Google recently added a feature to its popular email service that allows users to make free calls to the U.S. and Canada and low-cost international calls.

If you’re a Google Voice user (Voice is also free, of course), phone calls placed will display your Google Voice number as the outbound caller ID. Voice users can also choose to receive incoming calls placed to their Google Voice number directly in Gmail, in addition to any phone numbers already linked to their accounts.

Here’s how it works:

Free phone calls with Gmail

  1. Ensure that your computer speakers are on and at a good volume. You will also need a computer mic (many of the latest laptops have a mic built right in).
  2. Log into your Gmail account. If you don’t already have a Gmail account, you can create one here.
  3. Find the Google Chat window in the bottom left of your screen. Just above your list of online contacts you will see a phone icon marked “Call phone.”
  4. Click the “Call phone” icon to launch a phone dial.
  5. You click the dial pad, type in a number, or search for a contact.
  6. Click the blue button labeled “Call” to place your phone call.

Check out more guides in the Wirefly Guides section.

Related posts:

  1. Google Buzz Buzzes onto your Gmail Inbox, Cell Phone
  2. How to Setup a Personal Email Account on your BlackBerry
  3. Keeping Your Cell Phone Calls Private
  4. How to Forward Calls to Another Number

2 Responses to “How to Make Free Phone Calls with your Gmail Account”

  • Paula Troisi
    January 23, 2011

    Hi. I currently have my account with Verizon but was part of my previous husband’s account-then he moved his to Verizon too. I am still in love with my Sprint hardware and was going to use it just for the MP3 player…It is called the MUZIQ, and I can’t even find it for recycling. This phone was bought, probably in ’05 or ’06, but I fell in love with it and I still love it. I have a net book and all sorts of stuff, but I also have arthritis and this phone was made for me. The sound is fantastic.

    Would you please tell me how to set the settings so I can download my ITune music, instead of music only gotten through this phone…or something? I paid waaaayyy over what a netbook costs today. I find no way to use anything but the camera? Surely I can use it as an MP3 player.

    The problem we had with Sprint was coverage. My family is still a family, we just don’t live in the same city. Mr. Pittman lives in a very small town. Even here in Birmingham, Al…there is no coverage is most of the house and going outside, I have to hold it in the air and then stand still when I find a place…But then, in some places it works great. It’s just not that reliable where I live.

    Can you help me get some use out of this wonderful piece of hardware?



    previous number: 334-477-1212

    • Paula, I don’t know specifically about hte MUZIQ, but assume that it can play MP3 files. One problem playing MP3 files that you downloaded from iTunes is that older iTunes downloads are protected with Digital Rights Management (DRM). It’s my understanding that all iTunes files prior to 2009 were protected with DRM. Among other things, only Apple music players (iPhone and iPod) could play music with this DRM protection. So, if your iTunes files date from before 2009, you will not be able to play them on your MUZIQ.

      I hope that helps!

      Bob at Wirefly

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