GoogleTalk released…. yawn!

by Bharat Suneja

Every time Google releases a product, there is a lot of excitement built around it starting with rumors or leaks days or weeks before the product is released. Google contributes to this build-up by keeping the products in beta for as long as anyone can remember, and in some cases by limiting the beta by invitiation only as it did with Gmail.

Given the high expectations, most people expect Google products – even “betas” – to change the dynamics of the market and immediately pose a threat to existing players in that market.

Google released GoogleTalk today. At first looks, it is probably the least exciting Google product I’ve used so far. I may change my opinion later if Google updates this product, but right now I am prompted to uninstall it. Here’s why:

1. No connectivity to other IM communities like Yahoo, MSN or AOL. Rumors before the launch said this was built-in. It’s not, as far as I can tell. I don’t think most of my contacts would be willing to try or move to GoogleTalk. At this point it’s just another IM.
2. It has voice chat built-in, but Yahoo and MSN now have video as well.
3. There are no other features that make this a product worth using.
4. Competitors Yahoo and MSN are just a whole lot better, can do a lot more, have a much better interface.

The only thing I like about GoogleTalk so far is it’s name, the icon, and the logo. Perhaps Microsoft can learn a thing or two about naming products from these guys!

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