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11/14/2008
05:56 PM
Irwin Lazar
Irwin Lazar
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Google Expands Chat

Google today announced voice and video chat capabilities as part of its chat service embedded into Gmail. This is clearly a shot across the bow at Skype, SightSpeed (recently acquired by Logitech) and Oovoo. It's also a competitive move against Microsoft Hotmail and Yahoo Mail, as Google continues to evolve it's mail application into a full blown UC dashboard.Google's move is also indicative of what we're seeing in the enterprise space, as telephony vendors and messaging vendors converge while basing their UC offerings on their relative strengths. Google's voice/video chat nicely integrates into Gmail, enabling customers to use their Gmail contact list for chat, rather than having to maintain separate buddy lists in different applications. Now, how long before Google repositions Orkut as an alternative to Facebook that is fully integrated into Gmail & chat?

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