Google has taken over the world, or seemingly so. It seems like every week they are launching a new product or service. Last week it was Google’s phone, the Android, and today Google’s popular email client Gmail has added video chat to its service. Google Video and Voice (the service’s official name) was launched today and should now be available to all.
I was checking out the latest Digg articles and was immediately taken by a headline proclaiming that Gmail was now offering video chat. What great news this is! I frequently find myself using Gmail’s chat option to talk to my friends periodically throughout the day… adding the possibility to video chat would make my chatting experiences that much greater. Gmail is probably the number one way that I keep in touch with my best friends- having recently graduated in May, we’ve found ourselves dispersed across the country- Gmail’s simple and efficient technology has greatly added to our ability to keep in touch.
Google’s video chat option follows suit. According to Cnet news, the technology is fairly ‘bare bones’, although it is simple to install and use. Gmail Video uses a fairly small plug-in to support its network as opposed to the flash technology. This is fairly typical of video chat services. However, Don’t confuse this service with Skype. Gmail Video uses only the Internet (as opposed to the phone).
Google Video and Voice does not serve as an update to the Google Talk service. Google Talk has offered voice-only technology for a while and will still be available with the addition of the Google Video service. Google Video and Voice is yet another channel for communication to which Google is harnessing to their advantage. Their is speculation that the folks at Google will continue to make Gmail a multifaceted and interactive service while simultaneously remaining easy to use. Google plans on adding an SMS text option to their variety of services within the next several weeks. Now I can’t wait until they launch that service…
I applaud Google for taking over the world in such a user-friendly manner- the channels of interpersonal communication now available are sheerly mind-boggling!