Google Voice is a great service for having a single phone number ring multiple phones, plus you also get unlimited text messaging for free. A deal like that is pretty hard to beat, but iOS users aren’t able to get the integrated experience without jailbreaking their iPhone. There are some apps, however, that try to make using Google Voice a little more seamless.




The commonality I found between most iOS Google Voice apps is that since there is no public API for Google Voice many of them can feel sluggish if you don’t have a good network connection. This is because they are essentially loading and parsing the desktop version of the Google Voice site with each operation. When you’re trying to send or receive a simple text message the last thing you want to do is wait a minute for the app to finish what it’s doing.

The developer of Think Messenger ($2.99 on iTunes) and Think Dialer ($1.99 on iTunes) decided to take a different route. Instead of using the desktop version he went with the mobile version, which meant everything would be a lot faster, but some limitations would also be imposed. The speed improvements over some of the other apps like GV Mobile+ is rather noticeable to me. It even feels faster than the official Google Voice app released by Google themselves.

You may be wondering why there are two apps instead of just one, but I think that’s what makes me love this integration even more than the others. By separating out the calling and SMS text messaging it feels more like the native iPhone experience, and overall the apps feel a lot more polished than the others I’ve bought. The only thing that feels a little out of place is that the voicemail retrieval is done through the Think Messenger app, which I suspect is because the Think Dialer does not yet support push notifications. With Think Messenger you get native push notifications without any subscription fees, and it works very well.

Think Messenger Screenshots
Google voice ios sms 1 Google voice ios sms 2

 

Think Dialer Screenshots
Google voice ios dialer 1 Google voice ios dialer 2

 

Think Messenger Homepage ($2.99 on iTunes – Universal iPad/iPhone app)
Think Dialer Homepage ($1.99 on iTunes)