Google Talk. That’s all anyone seems to be talking about online these last few days. What’s the big deal? I must admit that I was drawn in to the hype, and even managed to get my Trillian IM client to connect the day before Google went live. (For those of you still having problems connecting with Trillian, check out Google’s extremely helpful article.
Does it live up to the hype? I’m not exactly sure what everyone was expecting. It does exactly as advertised. It’s an IM client that allows voice chatting. But doesn’t AIM allow you to do the same thing? The biggest difference, in my oppinion, is that Google’s solution is supposedly based on open standards. Well, except for the exciting part – VoIP. But they promise to release specifications “soon”. It must be the open standards that everyone’s excited about, because the actual delivered feature set falls short of just about every other IM service out there.
What will the open standards mean? I’m sure that some PHB at Google thinks that it will mean the end of telephony as we know it. Who knows. Skype has been at this for a little while now, but I don’t think that Skype has seriously eroded any incumbent telco’s profit margin.