Google has confirmed rumors from earlier this week that it has acquired Skype competitor Gizmo5.
In an announcement on the Google Voice blog (but notably not on the main Google blog… yet), Wesley Chan and Craig Walker, Group Product Managers for Google Voice said that “Gizmo5’s engineers will be joining the Google Voice team to continue improving the Google Voice and Gizmo5 experience” and that they “welcome the Gizmo5 team to Google.”
If those quotes seem a little light on detail, so was the announcement itself. Notably though (and in fine Google fashion) Gizmo5 is being closed off to new users, and existing users will no longer be able to sign up for a call-in number.
For the time being though, existing users will be able to continue to use the service, although you can see where this is heading: think Jaiku or any number of Google acquisitions before it: they keep it open for the short term but don’t allow new uers, merge the tech into an existing product (in this case Google Voice) or they eventually close it down. Either way, the existing service usually ends up going the way of the Dodos.
Gizmo5 took $6 million in VC and the rumored acquisition price was $30 million, not a bad exit for a company that was once billed as a Skype competitor, but never really got there.