Google has launched a much anticipated domains name service - Google Domains (domains.google.com). After years of speculation, Google announced the Beta launch of a service which some people in the industry are already calling a "GoDaddy killer" despite the fact that domains are only available to Google customers with a "U.S. billing address". The Google Domains page does though give people outside the United States the opportunity to "Get notified when Google Domains is available in your country", so the corporation's intentions are very clear. Google first registered with ICANN as a provider in 2005.
Google Domains had previously been available on an invitation-only "private testing" basis and Google's move to Beta comes in the wake of GoDaddy's recent IPO which raised $100 million. Google Domains offers many of the features other providers offer - email forwarding, domain forwarding, and the capability to provide up to 100 sub-domains. Phone support is now available for the service, underscoring how seriously the corporation is taking the project.
The Beta version of the service provides access to Google partners such as Shopify, Squarespace, and Weebly whose services include setting up websites. A number of website templates are also available through the service. In addition, Google Domains feeds into Blogger so people can attach a unique domain to their blogs.
The move also comes alongside Google's launch of domains with new extensions at http://www.google.com/registry/. The company has already launched .soy domains ("I am" in Spanish) and an extension which includes the Japanese symbol for "everyone". Others in the pipeline include .DAD, .ESQ, .HERE, .MEME, .PROF, .ZIP, .ADS, .DAY, .FLY, .HOW, .MOV, .RSVP, .BOO, .EAT, .FOO, .ING, and .NEW. Domains are available starting at $12 per year, going up to $30 a year depending on the extension.