By Alok Saboo on July 24th, 2009
UPDATE: This post has been revised. Read here for even more simpler trick to push Google Voice notifications to iPhone.
Google Voice is slowly changing the face of communication. We already explained earlier, how you can save your cell phone minutes using Google Voice. Today we explain how you can use Google Voice to even dump your text plan and save a few dollars!!
Here’s a step-by-step tutorial to:
- Get instant FREE notifications of Gmail messages on 3G/EDGE/WIFI
- Get instant FREE notifications of Google Voice events (new SMS, Voicemail)
Implementing this can allow you to completely replace your AT&T texting plan, by getting instant (push) notifications of SMS, Voicemail and Email. It is definitely tedious (takes about 20-30min to setup), but it’s not difficult and there’s no jailbreaking necessary.
How this works: Once the notifications are enabled, you’ll receive a status message on your iPhone that lets you know you’ve received an email, a new message in your Google Voice inbox. Login to GV Mobile or VoiceCentral or the Google Voice web interface to reply to your SMS, or check your emails to get the update. No need to refresh!
Although I haven’t tested it myself, I suspect it also works on the 2G and the 3G (as long as you have OS 3.0) and even your iPod Touch.
- an iPhone with internet connection,
- having a computer that is always on, with internet connection,
- installing several pieces of software,
- installing Firefox (if you don’t already have it),
- leaving a Firefox page open at all times (if you want Google Voice notifications),
- $3 for Prowl, plus donations.
Step 1 – Setup Things in Firefox
- Open up Firefox and install Greasemonkey and Grown GNTP extensions.
- Restart Firefox
- Go to http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/53723 and Install Google Voice Script
- If successfully installed, you will get a message in the Firefox status bar that says: Google Voice Script Installed Successfully.
Step 2 – Install Growl & Growl Mail
- Install Growl for Windows (I used 2.0b18).
- Follow the straightforward installation process and in the end click close to end the installation.
- Install Growl Mail. You can download the setup file from here.
- On the last screen, make sure to check “Launch Gmail Growl”.
- A new icon will appear in the system tray. Marked off (don’t worry about that yet). Double click it and you will get the following screen.
- Enter your Gmail info. Check automatically start with windows. Don’t worry about the 10 minutes at the bottom. Next, click the Network tab and select no proxy:
- It should check Gmail and update you in the status bar. Make sure to visit the donation tab, and click the X to close the window. Gmail Growl should still be running in the system tray.
Step 4 – Install Prowl on iPhone
- Go to the app store and install Prowl (iTunes link) on your phone. You know how to do this! After install the app on your phone, click it and open the page to setup an account. Register.
- Go to: https://prowl.weks.net/ and log on using the account you just created.
Press the button to generate the API key. Leave this window open (or copy-paste the API key somewhere, we’ll need it in a minute.
Step 5 – Open up Google Voice
- In Firefox (this is important), log in to Google voice. Leave the page open. (I suggest opening a second tab so that you have both Google Voice and the API Key from Prowl open).
Step 6 – Setup Growl (we’re almost there)
- Click the Growl icon in the system tray. Your first window will come up. I suggest clicking “start with windows” so that you don’t have to worry about it:
- Click the application tab. If you’ve done everything correctly, you should get the following screen:
- Click on the Firefox tab and disable all notifications (believe me that’s really annoying otherwise). To do so, select “False” from “Enable All Notifications”:
Step 7 – Add iPhone Output
- At this point, all the notifications are only going to appear on your computer. Click on the network tab:
- Then, click check-box “forward notifications to other computers”, click the green “plus” at the bottom left, and click on the iPhone:
- Now, name your device (doesn’t really matter). Go back to that API key and paste it in the form:
Step 8 – Enjoy!
At this point, you will receive notifications of Gmail emails, and notifications from Google Voice from new SMS. Login to GV Mobile, VoiceCentral or the Google Voice web interface to reply to your SMS, or check your emails to get the update. If you have a jailbroken iPhone, I recommend installing backgrounder and leave GV Mobile or VoiceCentral in the background, for fastest access.
p.s. This tutorial was written by Simon Blanchard. Simon is pursuing his PhD in Marketing at the Smeal College of Business at The Pennsylvania State University.Thanks Simon, keep ‘em comin!!