Oh what a tangled web we weave. I feel like I need to express how extremely disappointed in Google I am right now.
They were all independence and walled garden and network neutrality back in July of 2009 when their official Google Voice App was denied by Apple.
But how hypocritical can you be when they are now doing the same thing to 3rd party apps trying to access Google Voice from other mobile devices. They are not only not releasing an API like they have done with every other Google product out there, but they are implementing byzantine security to actually prevent 3rd party apps from accessing the same functionality that their Android native app is capable of or their new mobile site is able to access.
What does this mean to the non-technical? No matter how much authorization you provide a 3rd party app to access your Google Voice data, they don't want you to be able to dial out using the access number methodology like they have in Android and Google Voice Mobile. So you can give up your username and password to an app and then Google will still block that app from dialing out using the super easy access number that they allow their own apps to use.
But its their product they can do what they want, right? Sure, just don't go crying to everyone the next time some other vendor blocks your product from their platform or device. Would they be so willing to apply the same statement if say AT&T put a block of all users to the www.google.com domain and redirected to bing.com? I don't think so, and there really is no difference. If a user wants to use a 3rd party app to access their Google Voice account and take the same actions you can do on the web or in Android, then why block it?
Safety of users would be a good reason, but at that point if they were worried about it, it is too late, the user has already given the keys to the kingdom and with the extensive Google API's, they could modify your contacts, send email from your account, search your Google Documents, but what they absolutely cannot do? Dial a US no-cost phone number using the access numbers that Google has setup for Google Voice.
Really Google? Really?
How many security keys can you need? You get one when you login with the user's info, then when you go to Google Voice it creates another one, then if you want to dial out, you need yet another key. You protect the phone more than anything else in your offerings and it just doesn't add up.
This is the summation of my frustrations in trying to maintain gDial Pro for webOS mobile phones. I have spent more time on troubleshooting the Google interface piece than anything else on the phone. Why not put out an API? There is an API for Wave, and even the new Buzz, but nothing for Google Voice.
So it begs the question, why is there no API? Lack of resources, I doubt it, security of info, see above as there is a lot better info to access if you were trying to do something wrong.
Where does it leave us? I don't know, they must have some reason for it. Take a look at their Data Liberation Front. Then go to the Voice item, hmmmmm, not a lot going on there for data liberation.
If you profess freedom, then you have to be free yourself or it dilutes the message.