30 November 2007

Group Chatting in Gmail's GTalk?

Yes! Recently, Google has included a new feature to their Gmail webmail service. Gmail now wires in a "Group Chat" capability inside the email client via GTalk. The newly added goody lets you chat with many friends at once in a single window, a feature very much present and have been very useful in Yahoo group chatting long time ago. One thing unique in the application, though, is that anyone involved in the chat can invite any other member to the group chat. There is also no limit to the number of people you can chat with. Moreover, enhanced emoticons have also been added to make the chatting experience more bubbly and lively.

To initiate a group chat, click "Group chat" from the "Options" tab in the lower left corner of the chat interface when chatting. Enter the names of the people you want to add, and, bingo, you are in your very own chat room. All the familiar features such as chat archiving and taking the chat off the record still work as well.

According to gmailblog writer Sergey Solyanik, these features only work with the latest version of Gmail, which they are still rolling out to IE6, international and Google Apps users.

Although people always expect a lot of things from Google whenever they launch a new product, these new features seem to be “million miles” behind when compared to Yahoo’s YM and other popular chat applications. However, as they say, better late than never.

For a Gmail fanatic like me, I find this development rather totally disappointing. Primarily because I am looking for unique features or breakthrough applications in chatting which other contenders, like YM and MSN Messenger, have not yet implemented.

I don’t know. Maybe I was just craving for too much.

What do you think?

Do you like these new GTalk chatting features?

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Happy weekend!

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