Could Google Kill Cell Phone Plans In The US?

The United States, more than a lot of other countries I’ve been to, has a ridiculous relationships with cell phone plans. The fact that we still pay for “minutes” of talk time is absolutely ridiculous and something that chafes me every month. However, it’s pretty tough to get a plan without a voice plan so you can go completely reliant on something like Google Voice. I wouldn’t even want to do that, though, because Google does not have a good track record of keeping products around.

I’ve recently been wondering if Google might actually have a cell phone plan killing product on their hands…in the form of Hangouts (iOS app link). Check it out. I can send messages, voice and video call Gmail contacts, and even call my address book from within the app.

Here are my options:

Options for contacts

What about voice calls?

Calling my wife

What about other phone numbers?

Ooh, call other phone numbers.
There’s my chat list that syncs with Gmail too.

Hangouts has all the things I want in one place:

  • Voice calls with no predetermined number that I may go over, but likely will just overpay for
  • Messages that sync across the places I use messaging — Gmail and my phone.
  • Ability to call external numbers

I’m voting for Hangouts to win the race for killing cell phone minutes forever.

What do you think?

*Update* — seems entirely plausible according to TheVerge.

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