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Continuing its rapid expansion into new product categories, the Internet search giant plans to launch an instant messaging program called Google Talk as early as Wednesday, according to people familiar with the service.
Full article on LA Times [latimes.com]
The concept of serving contextual ads based on the topic of the conversation is also quite intriguing.
This part is especially interesting to those following presence and VoIP markets:-
According to a person who has seen the service, Google plans to let users chat using more than just their keyboards. Like similar programs from competitors, Google Talk also will let computer users with a headset have voice conversations with other computer users with headsets, this person said.
It seems to me that Google are battling for desktop space here. The internet is getting ever closer to the desktop, and the dekstop is where you need your ads.
I guess that the main target might be Skype rather than just the instant messaging networks?
they might find it difficult to enter the IM market
I wouldn't underestimate the power of a brand as strong as google.
You could have said the same thing about internet mail when google launched gmail. They responded with a gimmick (1 gig) and something useful (search).
Expect to see the same. It'll have a gimmick, and something useful.
When the google marketing wheels are set in motion, it's a beauty to behold. I've always admired them for that.
Remember the April 1st Gmail launch? Utter genius...
And anyway, as a webmaster, how do you like the idea of all your IM conversations (and emails if using Gmail) going through Google servers? They would have to be machine parsed / analysed to serve you context ads, so what else could they do with those conversations?
they might find it difficult to enter the IM market
I thought exactly the same thing about Microsoft when they entered the market. I couldn't see how they could survive against ICQ which dominated the market, but look what happened.
Microsft had a powerful brand with MSN and Messenger was easier to use.
Google could potentially do the same if they get it right.
Having the opportunity to discuss this with the developer in charge or the person on the marketing side of this would be extremely exciting. If they told me to screw off, that would be fine, or if they've already planned it, or whatever, I don't care. I just want to give it a shot. I think it would definately be worth their while...
Add to that the social networking thing they bought a few months ago (name escapes me), Google maps, Google local, again Android (some interesting stuff behind that company if you dig deep enough).
Will Google even need to launch an OS to compete with the desktop market? They could almost completely sidestep it by offering a lot of the additional features that the average user wants.
VOIP, email, IM, SMS, Search, Local info, Networking....
ICQ once reigned supreme. This is because no IM clients were around to be included in anything. ICQ was user downloaded and installed. Always opt in.
AOL, MSN and Y! devloped user bases not from downloads, but integration. AOL through its internet service, MSN through Windows XP and MSN internet, and Yahoo through its toolbars and other misc apps. People essentially stumbled onto these IMs that were being placed in front of them.
Can Google do this? Yes. They have Gmail and Toolbar to help integrate a client and get users. Will it be hard? Yes. I've always hoped they would buy Trillian and just rebrand and extend.
IM can be a tough nut to crack, but if anyone is up to it, it's Google. The AdSpace is simply too lucrative to not try.
<GRIPE>When r they gono get a spell checkre on here?</GRIPE>
i cant wait to ditch my hotmail account which i only use for instant messaging.
Hotmail does not support instant messaging.
You don't need a Hotmail account to use MSN Messenger, only a Passport account.
It's true that hotmail accounts are automatically Passport accounts as well, but you can register any email address as a Passport account, even Gmail addresses.
[edited by: walkman at 5:01 pm (utc) on Aug. 23, 2005]
As for features, they might expand the software into a full-fleged calendar and diary system: see my post at [webmasterworld.com...]
I use MSN despite being a Linux user, because that is the preferred network of my family, friends and associates.
Same here, I use kopete so I'm sure support for Google Talk will be added soon. Wont see ads, so the privacy and secuirty issues dont affect me :)
About the whole gimmic part, I think they'll give you a gmail account if you sing up for their own version of "passport"
But the only thing is I dont think gmail looks so hot anymore. AIM offers 2gb, yahoo 1, etc... And you still cant register your gmail account
<sidebar> Hey, Kim? Looky who I found lounging at the WW water cooler... Stef (scroll up)</sidebar>
I couldn't ditch my hotmail account if I wanted to. Way too many people have it, and I have had it since the beginning of etime. It became so important to me on a personal level, that I setup a second Yahoo address, just to use for setting up accounts where I might ultimately get alot of spam. That cleaned up my hotmail account, and made it easier for me to manage my personal email. My first Yahoo email is for my VIP friends. Very short list.
I did setup an gmail account, but I hate it, and have never used it, except for news alerts which are then just sitting there, where I can search email topics for research, in case I need them.
I love the hotmail, because I can import it thru outlook express. I can't do that with Yahoo.
I agree ICQ was fabulous, though a pain in the neck, way back. It was only fabulous because inspite of the problems associated with it, it was the best game in town. I always hated Yahoo. It was too bulky, and sucked up RAM fast and furious. In the old days, it would lock up a smaller machine in 5 minutes flat. That was the reason I went to MSN messenger. Now, with much better machines here, the Yahoo voice is excellent, and it is our default program here. Smooth as silk. (Can you hear me, can you hear me now? You betcha!)
I'm not eager to change now, to the new game in town, maybe in a couple years. When umpteen upgrades later the G system has all the bugs worked out, AND I get bored, I might give it a whirl.