Google Voice was launched quite a while ago. It was something that I was interested in right from the start. With help from a co-worker who was on it, I was able to get an invite to check out this very cool service.
Imagine one number to rule them all...
Google Voice allows you to setup a phone number in your area code and then use it to centralize all of your call management.
For example, I setup my new number to forward on to my cell phone. You can also have it try multiple phones which makes things very handy.
It has built in voice mail and can send you an email with the transcription of the voice mail message, or can even send you a SMS text message! You can also record custom greeting messages and if you wanted to go a step further setup custom messages for callers based on Groups that you can create and use to organize your contacts.
Here's an example of a message I left on the Google Voice number yesterday - as you can see it's got the content of the voice mail right in the message body, or I can choose to open it and listen to it.
As far as SMS capability, you can send and recieve texts with your number, and even forward those on to your other phones.
Other features include call screening, and you can even create widgets, like the one I added to this blog. (I'm not sure if I'll keep it up here or not, but it's a cool idea!)