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gmail, followed by an IM system is about as hardcore as you can go to tying your users in.
gmail is going to result in people continously being logged in to the google network, I know I will be, as 1Gb of messages is gonna take some filling up :)
combine that with an IM system, and BINGO, Hotmail you have a problem.
I use MSN messenger, but NEVER use Hotmail because of the junk that arrives every day.
Gmail seems to be different, and I am quite confident in their anti-spam capabilities.
a year ago, I would have said, NO chance.
today, I say, very very possible.
would be keen to revisit this post in 12 months time...
There must be some concerns though over how far they can go without loosing the concept of just being a unique, simple and accurate search engine.
Keeping my excitement apart, I won't be surprised to see a convo in Google IM like:
You: Hey, how are you?
Me: Great, just trying to lookout for a widget.
Sponsored Listing: XYZ.com - Get top quality at discounted rates.
No hard intentions.. just sharing light humor! I am all for Google!
All I can say is at least they need to add a GMail button to the gTB - just like the "blogger" one - that autonotifies when you get mail.
It's very simple, if you're giving your email address to a forum or sweepstakes or anything that isn't a personal contact, you give it as firstname.lastname@example.org - you can even do a new one for each site, ie: email@example.com - firstname.lastname@example.org - etc, then things come in presorted and it's easy to see whose selling your name where :)
Just a thought I had for some reason all of a sudden.
But to stay on topic, Gmail + IM = domination, absolutely. I'm boycott everything else if this indeed came true :D
Search, Toolbar (w/popupstopper), Email, IM, Product Search (Froogle)... yeah, world domination seems to be imminant.
D: Maybe Google is the anticrist!
They'd really have to change their aim to something like to provide a gateway to the world's information, and theres not much money to be made - can you imagine AdSense on your IMs? No, neither can I, and I can't see how it'd work
Never installed Yahoo, newer versions of ICQ, and I even figured out how to get that friggin MSN messenger off of my computer. If you don't have AIM, you don't get to instant message me - sorry. I won't be signing up for another one.
And yeah I know stuff like Trillian is out there now where you can connect to all of the major IM servers, but man who cares? I've got my AIM and I'm sticking with it.