Gmail Chat Gets Talk Gadget Features, but Client Still Lacks

closeThis post was published 12 years 8 months 10 days ago. A number of changes have been made to the site since then, so please contact me if anything is broken or seems wrong.

Once again, Google has updated Gmail. Coming just a few weeks after the much-hyped Gmail 2.0 is support for Group Chat and graphical emoticons in Gmail’s chat function. It looks interesting, and I was wondering when all the innovations of the Google Talk Gadget would be brought to Gmail. I’m glad they did it.

The only thing left now is for Google to bring the features home to the Google Talk client, where the service started. Through a conversation with one of my friends, I’ve hashed out some possible reasons for Google’s lack of updates for the client:

i80and: Anyway, their main focus is search, search, search, and the GTalk client was kind of out of bounds for them
Me: But they’re actively developing the Gadget and Gmail Chat. One would think they could put a few people to work on the client they started. And the Talk homepage even has the focus back on the downloadable version. Tell me that doesn’t mean something.
i80and: Maybe they’re working on some killer new feature, and they want people to celebrate instead of go “Hrm, cool” when it’s released
i80and: Possibly they’re even porting it to Linux!
Me: I’ll celebrate if they issue a security update at this point.
Me: This is what I read, BTW:
i80and: Well, I imagine the GTalk client isn’t a huge priority to them. I mean, all of my non-geek friends use either the gadget or gmail
Me: You do have a point there
Me: Mine, too

The main point here is that Google is either coming up with some huge new feature for the client, or they’re ignoring it because not many users actually run it. I would really like to see some updates to it, as it hasn’t been updated since last fall. I’d also, for that matter, like to see them switch to standard Jabber implementations of rich text and voice chat; not being able to use another Jabber client to voice chat is irritating at best.

i80and is a Python programmer who recently learned C. We met at homeschooling classes in 2004, and have been in nearly constant contact ever since. When we’re not wasting time chatting over Google’s (broken) Jabber-like network, he currently works on VetClix, a veterinary management system programmed with his newly-acquired C, GTK+, and MySQL skills. He can be found on the Web at his blog, website, Twitter page, and Wikipedia userpage.


I am an avid technology and software user, in addition to being reasonably well-versed in CSS, JavaScript, HTML, PHP, Python, and (though it still scares me) Perl. Aside from my technological tendencies, I am also a theatre technician, sound designer, violinist, singer, and actor.

One Comment:

  1. Yay! I’ve been quoted!
    As a user of Pidgin, I don’t have a personal attachment to having updates to GTalk (although if they were to port it to Linux, I might consider switching).

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