In many respects Google Hangouts is impressive—it brings together Google's disparate chat options rather neatly—but you should think twice about using it if you rely on making Google Voice calls from your computer.
Those who have updated Google Talk in their Gmail accounts—easy enough to do by selecting "Try the new Hangouts" after clicking your chat avatar—are reporting that it's now impossible to place or receive Google Voice calls from the inbox. In fact, as Verge explains, that means the only option for making a Google call from the a computer is to use the web-based calls app, which calls one of your connected phones, and can then be rerouted to the person you're trying to get in touch with. Basically, a pain in the ass.
What to do? Well, don't bother upgrading to Hangouts in Gmail if you use Google Voice to make phone calls from your computer. If you already have upgraded, though, fortunately you can revert back to the old-style chat by clicking on your avatar again.
It should be clear by now that Hangouts is far from a final, finished product, and Google has already hinted that it plans to add more of the its Voice features into Hangouts over time, along with SMS support at some point in the future. With any luck, that'll include making phone calls from your computer, too. [Verge]