Google has unveiled CallJoy, a cloud-based phone agent for small businesses. Instead of disrupting the cloud-based PBX market, it looks like CallJoy wants to complement and automate existing cloud-based phone services.
Google's internal incubator, known as Area 120, apparently played a big role in nurturing CallJoy to market. Bob Summers is credited as the service's founder.
According to CallJoy, the $39 per month service offers:
- a phone number with a local area code;
- an intelligent virtual voice agent and custom greetings;
- unlimited call recording and conversation transcripts;
- textback functionality;
- spam blocking technology; and
- Google My Business integration.
Built-in analytics allow small businesses to track call topics, call volumes based on time of day, and more. The system also includes dashboard- and email-based reports. Early testers include Prime Tech Support, an IT service provider in Miami, CallJoy says.
CallJoy and Duplex: Related?
CallJoy surfaced exactly a month after Google started broadly rolling out the much-touted Duplex artificial intelligence caller, SiliconAngle notes. Duplex, which lives inside Google Assistant, can find a restaurant’s phone number, reserve a table for the user over the phone and then create an entry in her calendar, SiliConAngle adds.
CallJoy isn't generally available just yet. The service is in early access mode -- which means Google essentially is hand-picking early adopters before making the platform generally available to all small business customers.
CallJoy is compatible with a small business's existing phone service -- whether it is a traditional landline, mobile phone, Google Voice or other cloud provider, the company says. This CallJoy FAQ offers additional details about how the service works.
In stark contrast, Microsoft has attempted to build a full-blown cloud PBX for Office 365.
CallJoy and Google Cloud Platform
The new service arrives as Google attempts to accelerate its cloud-related revenues through home-grown initiatives and deeper ISV (independent software vendor) relationships.
Although the Google Cloud Platform (GCP) business is growing, it is considered a distant third to Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS). Moreover, Google CEO Sundar Pichai dodged questions about actual cloud revenue figures during parent Alphabet’s earnings call on Monday, April 29, 2019.