Grumbling About GrandCentral

By  |  Monday, January 26, 2009 at 10:25 am

GrandCentralLike me, WebWorkerDaily’s Judi Sohn uses Google’s GrandCentral phone service, which sports an array of fancy tricks like auto-forwarding to multiple numbers at once. When Judi logged in this morning, she found her browser telling her that GrandCentral’s SSL security certificate had expired. She uses that as a springboard to fret about the future of GrandCentral in general: It’s been in closed-beta limbo for eons, and Google shows no signs of readying it for general release. She ends with the ultimate vote of no confidence: a request that Google shut down GrandCentral and help people transfer their phone numbers elsewhere.

I didn’t have the certificate problem myself, but I’ve wondered what the heck is going on with GrandCentral in these quarters before. Confession: Despite the fact that GrandCentral is beta, I use a GrandCentral number as Technologizer’s main business phone number. For the most part, I’m happy with it. But¬† Judi’s skepticism that GrandCentral will ever emerge from beta has me paranoid that it may go away, and that I’ll be sorry I handed out all those business cards with a GrandCentral number on them.

If nothing else, I should probably be worried about the fact that GrandCentral’s home page no longer trumpets the slogan “One Number…for Life” (here’s what the tagline looked like back when it was there, plus some additional promises about the service’s permanence):

One Number For Life

I guess “One Number…Until Google Decides to Direct Its Attention Elsewhere and Quietly Shutters the Service” doesn’t have the same ring to it…

To be clear, Google hasn’t said that GrandCentral is at risk. Actually, it hasn’t said much of anything about the service since it acquired it. It’s conceivable that it’ll add new features and/or take it out of beta any day now. And I’ll choose to take it as a good sign that it wasn’t among the services that Google did kill or scale back a couple of weeks ago.

For now, I’m still using and liking GrandCentral, and I’m certainly not willing to join Judi Sohn’s call for Google to euthanize it. An encouraging word or two from Google would be nice, though–especially if the gist was “we’re investing in GrandCentral and intend to roll it out to all comers as soon as we think it’s ready.”


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13 Comments For This Post

  1. Roberta Dikeman Says:

    I too would like to see where it’s going. I have given the number to some family, but I haven’t used it universally, such as for the number for day care to contact me, in case it is shut down unexpectedly.

  2. mike Says:

    Any grand central invites?

    woudl love one

  3. jack Says:

    $50 for a working invite – or $100 for existing 415 account…

  4. Gopi Says:

    Need a Grand Central Invite please……

    My email:

    Thank you

  5. bill Says:

    May I please have an invite

  6. JImmy like corn Says:

    I am looking for an invite, tightwhip at gmail dot com

  7. YLK Says:

    Please send GrandCentral invite to public_ylk yahoo com

  8. YLK Says:

    Please send GrandCentral invite to public_ylk at yahoo dot com

  9. Ty Says:

    Would love an invite

  10. Will Says:

    One fully year of free web hosting to the person the supplies me with a working GrandCentral or Google Voice invite. I need it ASAP. Top notch servers and blazing fast DNS. ashworth102680 [at] gmail [dot] com

  11. RC Says:

    I have 6 314 numbers you will have to change the email on the acc
    I don’t need web hosting anything els?

  12. Will Says:

    I got an invite to beta from a Product Manager at Google. Thanks

  13. eh3 Says:

    Anyone got anymore invites?

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