Get ready for Google ( GOOG), the phone company. Earlier this month, the search giant announced that Web domination wasn't enough. Google also wants to offer phone service. To do it, the Mountain View, Calif., company upgraded GrandCentral, the computer-based calling product it bought two years ago. GrandCentral caused a stir back in the day. Here was a Web-based system that not only worked on any landline, cell phone or computer, but also allowed users to control their numbers, create e-mail notifications and develop personal networks at no cost. That's right, GrandCentral was free. For its "Ma Bell" makeover, the company rebranded GrandCentral as Google Voice. (I had hoped for "Voogle"). The system remains Web-based and works with any line. Calls within the U.S. are still free. Calls from the U.S. to Europe or South America start at roughly 2 cents a minute. What you get: Google Voice provides a fascinating glimpse into the future of small business telecommunications. The system provides a phone number without the phone. And once you pick that number, it's yours. You can forward it, e-mail from it, record messages for it. You can put a widget on your Web site and have others call it. You can get transcriptions of your voice mail or send text messages with it. You can use it to connect to other Google products, such as those that manage documents and photos. For better or worse, it resembles Gmail, the company's e-mail system.