One of our favorite Google Voice applications is 'GoVoice' (you can't beat free SMS and a single, global number) and while the developer, Nicholai Yu has been busy with other work projects, he does have a shiny new v3.0 of the app headed to the Marketplace. The improvements are many and in our opinion, make this app a lot better.

We got a sneak peak at the app, which is near completion and we can say it is much faster now due to the caching of messages, meaning it doesn't have to re-sync everything on launch. We also like the new counter number and overall added options. Look for it soon in the Marketplace (we'll do a post on it). And we'll let Nick announce the full feature set when he's ready, but it's significant.

The other big news is after version 3.0, Nick plans to make the app completely free. The good news is that we won't loose push functionality and current GoVoice users who paid will stay on the GoVoice servers. For the "free" version, GoVoice will "...provide a way for new users to receive Push" but with different servers than the GoVoice ones. As Nick writes on his blog:

The conclusion is: everyone will still get the exact the same functionality as before. If you need Push and you already paid for it, you will still get it. If you need Push and you didn’t get it through the paid version, we will have a way for you to get it.

He's also not abandoning the project and he does plan to add more features, but he is winding down a bit (and honestly, you can only do so much without having native code or direct access to the system address book). Read more on Nick's blog here and grab 'GoVoice' here in the Marketplace.