Impossible to get away from discussions of Goggleâ€™s newest release â€“ Google Talk. Reactions seem a bit ho hum so far.
Admittedly, I havenâ€™t played around with it all that much but there are a few drawbacks that I can see initially. The Google Talk software is restricted to Windows, so you canâ€™t use it to call someone running Linux or OS X on their desktop. (Users of other IM clients can, however, engage in chat messages with users of Google Talk thanks to its use of the Jabber protocol.)
In contrast, Skype runs on Windows, Linux or OS X. Skype calls are also encrypted, and the Skype client allows users to chat with others using the Skype client (regardless of the platform they are running it on). Skype has a lot more going for it as well â€“ through paid services, users can call PSTN phones, and receive calls from non-VOIP phones as well. Interestingly, Skype has also announced that it will open up the API for its IM functionality to developers.
It would be interesting to compare the quality of phone calls using both Google Talk and Skype. Something for the weekend I suppose.