Google bans third-party apps using Google Voice

Google is giving apps that use Google Voice six months life before it removes all support due to the apps violating the terms of services as it prepares to offer Google Voice support within Hangouts.

The third-party apps involved have been offering calling and SMS services using Google Voice and will have to cease using it by 15 May 2014.

“We want to make Google Voice as secure as possible. There are a few third-party applications that provide calling and SMS services by making unauthorized use of Google Voice,” said Nikhyl Singhal, director of real-time communications, in a Google+ post.

“These apps violate our Terms of Service and pose a threat to your security, so we’re notifying these app developers that they must stop making unauthorized use of Google Voice to run their services and transition users by May 15, 2014,” he added.

Singhal also announced a new version of the Google+ Hangouts app for Android, which finally brings support for SMS and MMS in the app that many users have been requesting for some time.

He went on to explain that this update won’t work with Google Voice numbers unless the number has been enabled on a device on US network Sprint. Support for SMS messaging on all Google Voice numbers will arrive “early next year” and those outside the US can be rest assured that Google is “working hard” to make it happen.

Support for Google Voice was removed when Google updated its Google Chat and Google Talk products to become one distinct product known as Hangouts. It promised in May, the time of the change, that Google Voice support wouldn’t be far off.

Google Hangouts grew into a standalone app after it was originally an integral part of Google+ when the social networking site first launched.