Google Talk

Google Talk, the ultra-hyped Google instant messaging service that every tech reporter and his dog was writing about this week, is now live. No official announcement yet, but apparently something is due out on Tuesday.

It’s based on Jabber, but there’s also voice chat (computer-to-computer - you can’t dial out to landlines, at least not yet), and the rumour is you’ll be able to use their voice chat with iChat, AIM, MSN, and other users at some point soon. I have no idea if they support Jabber gateways that allow you to connect to other services such as MSN, ICQ, AOL, etc., using existing service logins, but my guess is it should work.

I’m not sure how this is going to distinguish itself in the already very crowded IM landscape, but I’m sure Google has some crazy-ass feature in their back pockets that they’re just waiting to whip out to beat the crap out of MSN messenger with. The fact that you should be able to connect to other services already makes it a trillion times better than seriously weak MSN, but that can’t be all of the goodies.

I was about to post a how-to for configuring Adiumx, my IM client of choice, to access Google Talk, but I just found the set-up instructions for Adiumx on the Google Talk help site. It looks like Google means to keep Google Talk open and easy to access - here’s what they said:

We can say this, though: we believe strongly in user choice and open standards, and we are committed to letting users access Google Talk using the client and platform of their choice, as well as to enabling our users to talk with users from other service providers.

The big just keep getting bigger and bigger.

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