Last night, like the rest of the geeks out there, I tried out Google Talk. Overall, I don’t think its much to talk about.
Here are my reasons:
You have to have a gmail account to be a buddy or invite anyone. This is a big restriction. It doesn’t matter that it is based on Jabber/XMPP. Nobody I know is on their system and have no reason to switch.
The UI is definitely sparse. I think that their old idea of bucking the trend is a smart one. Whatever. I and a lot of other people like a well done slick interface. Being a windows programmer, I took a quick spy of their UI classes. All are your cut and dry Win32 standard controls. This app could have been written in 3 months with 1 or 2 guys… easily. Especially since the heavy lifting on the audio side was done by another, experienced company.
Their voice capability will not cause me to leave Skype. Yeah, they use the same codecs/tech from Global IP Sound, and it worked well. Who am I going to talk with? Is this a real VOIP app. Nope.
No innovation. They didn’t raise the bar on any feature.
Overall, no big wow factor happened with its release. Gmail and Google Maps really did that, this and other things have not. I’ll stick with Trillian until something interesting happens.