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Google Instant Messenger all Rumor 265

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the or-maybe-this-is-just-a-clever-distraction dept.
Jbravo writes "Search, blogging, maps, photos, email, and now a portal, Google has kept adding to their array of services. Is an instant messenger next for Google? Most recently Google has been said to be buying out a company called Meetroduction, LLC for their instant messenger Meetro. So, is it true? Is Google writing the check now? Well, after a chat with Paul Bragiel, CEO of Meetroduction, the word is not right now. He called the whole story 'rumors.'"
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Google Instant Messenger all Rumor

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  • Hello? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:10PM (#13317046)
    Wasn't this called "Hello"? See here:
    http://www.google.com/intl/en/options/ [google.com]
    • Yeah, I got it (Hello) on my computer right now.

      I don't know anyone else who uses it, but when I *do* finally make friends I'll be all set!
    • Re:Hello? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Takumi2501 (728347)
      From TFA:

      Google already has an instant messenger. "Hello" is a product that they received along with Picasa.
    • Re:Hello? (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Nothing beats ICQ's realtime chat mode. Anyone know of another client that has the same type of feature?

      I just tried Meetro. My thoughts: it's going to be responsible for a lot of freshmen and women losing their virginity this year. Other than that, it seems like a rather uninteresting IM client.

  • by Sv-Manowar (772313) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:12PM (#13317058) Homepage Journal
    A lot of people already have IM networks that they're locked into because their friends/contacts are happy with that network and use it. In europe, its extremely common for people to have MSN, whilst the trend stateside seems to be more toward AIM (with MSN still significant there too). Google could do better by adopting something like XMPP/Jabber and either using a client that supports MSN/AIM/ICQ protocols or the server-side protocol translation that Jabber supports. A solid Google IM client based on XMPP might be just what the standard needs to build profile (whilst still allowing easy adoption through MSN/AIM compatibility)
  • Rumors and denials (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Junior J. Junior III (192702) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:12PM (#13317061) Homepage
    Denials are almost a sure sign that something is up. Rumors, I don't know. But every time a company denies something, it seems it's actually confirmed shortly thereafter.
    • by iluvcapra (782887)

      Absolutely right. If nothing were up, it would be in his interest to simply not comment, since it would feed interest in his company.

      He called the whole story 'rumors'.

      Read this as "He's doing the best he can to hold down his stock price so he can buy back as much of it as possible before the deal's announced."

    • Eh, I doubt that. I just spoke to Paul on Meetro and he called this /. post 'Hillarious' because they're just rumors.
  • Too many already (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ilyaaohell (866922) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:13PM (#13317065)
    Any company trying to roll out yet another instant messenger would be making a mistake. There are already three uber-popular, incompatible networks, not to mention the handful of smaller protocols. None of them really offer anything that the others don't have. Enough is enough.
    • by A beautiful mind (821714) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:26PM (#13317116)
      and IRC from 1988 still beats them hands down.
      • by ilyaaohell (866922)
        I don't know what you're trying to say, so I'm guessing you're just trying to score some mod points here. IRC is designed for group conversations, AIM/MSN/Yahoo is designed for person-to-person conversations. Having said that, those IM services also have fully functional chat room capabilities. So basically it's just like IRC, only with more functionality and centered around people who keep a regular network of friends.

        But hey, I'm sure that you've already earned yourself some "Insightful" points from someo
        • Ok, let's skip your attitude.

          How does it have more functionality than irc? It has _different_ functionality.

          Being a bitlbee user, i'm redirecting all of my IM traffic to IRC anyway, for convenience reasons, so i really don't get what's your point. I was just trying to highlight the fact that for a lot of people a protocol created 17 years ago perfectly does the job, or does the job better.
          • by irc.goatse.cx troll (593289) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @04:17PM (#13317330) Journal
            Depends on the job you're doing. No webcams, voicechat, direct ims(read: pictures inside convos, great for screenshots), or any other 'rich' features

            IRC is extendable enough that you can add it, and a few clients have tried in the past(VIRC), but theyre just not standardized enough to rely on.
            Tis a shame too If someone made a nice client that actually offered these features it'd save me and my friends a lot of time/effort having to switch between irc/aim depending on what is needed. I of course prefer irc when possible, but if I have a screenshot in my buffer, I'd rather click direct connect and right click -> paste picture than open ms paint, paste, save to disk, /dcc send nick (path to one-off screenshot), delete screenshot.

    • Re:Too many already (Score:2, Interesting)

      by TheEqualizer (812747)
      Indeed, with Yahoo, MSN and AIM the whole IM market is already oversaturated, Google would need at least 2-3 years to build a decent sized following. The idea does however fit in the whole "collecting all the information in the world" motto they have. Maybe they'll make it a beta like all the majority of their projects, and asses futer development based on beta's success.
      • Re:Too many already (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ilyaaohell (866922)
        I don't see how facilitating instant internet communication fits into their "collecting all the information in the world" motto at all. It would take a REALLY anally-retentive person to want a searchable log of ALL their conversations with their friends, if that's what you're implying here.
        • Re:Too many already (Score:2, Interesting)

          by irtza (893217)
          um... i do that already with gaim. I have logs of all conversations... currently over 10 megs of logs going back a few years. It is unbelievably useful. addresses, phone numbers, birthdays, all sorts of information ready to be mined with grep. Of course I have only needed to do that a few times, but nonetheless one must maintain the logs to be able to ever do it.

          also, you don't have to be anally retentive to do that. Its the same reason I keep all emails and documents written and have downloaded the hu
        • Seems to me it would be precisely as useful or worthless as email - and therefore gmail, which sets a precedent for google's view of the matter.
          • I'm gonna have to go ahead and disagree with you there. E-mail is generally used for either business communication, or something so important that you can't wait for the person to get online or get home and tell them over IM or the phone. In my experience, people just generally use e-mail for the more "important" messages.

            IM, on the other hand, is used for social conversations (for the most part). How many of us need a searchable record of our social activities?
        • But having logs of IM conversations is a really good way of proving the girlfriend I'd told her something... 'Bout the only time I ever win arguments.
        • Hmm... I've got full IM logs on all of my MSN convos that I've had since I've installed it on this lappy.

          Not VERY searchable, but if I know who sent it to me, it's a simple right click contact, "View Message History", click "Search", type what I'm looking for.
        • # du -hs irclogs/

          767M irclogs/

          It is extremely useful for me to have all these logs, i need those on a weekly basis at least with thousands of little tidbits of info. However, i would never let google log all these details, it would quite possible include most things there is to know about me.

          Oh yeah i'm an irc operator, so it's useful for that reason too to keep logs.
    • Re:Too many already (Score:2, Informative)

      by skinnytie (594811)
      Actually, check out http://www.meetro.com/ [meetro.com] . This client is location based. It auto-populates your buddy list with people around you based on criteria.
    • I'll play devils advocate and suggest that there *IS* a benefit to be had from a new player *if*:

      First they realize that there is no need for a new protocol. AOL, Yahoo, and MS I think have all learned that having their own private protocol is not the path to infinite wealth. I've been using the Gaim client on Linux and the iChat client under OS X (to get to the AIM servers) for a long time. None of them make a dime off me as a result and I don't think there have been any attempts to close the protocols
  • by theotherlight (904426) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:13PM (#13317067)
    we really don't need another IM program. I'll consider trying it, but I think the general IM'ing population won't want to change.

    I'll change in a second -- and tell all of my friends to change -- if, somehow, it just blows everything else out of the water. This, however, seems unlikely.
  • by todesengel (722281) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:14PM (#13317071)
    Sure they don't advertise it, but Hello [hello.com] is a Google product...
  • Look out... (Score:3, Funny)

    by gorus (249583) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:15PM (#13317074) Homepage
    ...sooner or later, Googlezon is coming.
    • Oooooh... look at the spooky mass-media conglomerate forming over the horizon... it's gonna getcha!

      Okay, seriously, while I'm as against the increasing tendency to gather media outlets into the hands of an ever-decreasing number of people as the next ranting lunatic, at the moment Google is perhaps the company to be worried least about doing this and abusing their role.

      At the moment.
  • considered rumor only from now until it actually gets announced....
  • by Angostura (703910) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:17PM (#13317083)
    .. It is, to use the old phrase "a non-denial denial".

    If the guy had said "It's just rumours and there is absolutely no truth in it" that would be one thing. Just saying "it's a rumour" is the polite equivalent of "no comment".

    I would imagine that Paul Bragiel and his company is quite enjoying the attention, so it's not in his interests to decisively quash these rumours, so he's left things a little ambiguous.
  • ...that it is absolutely true. To butcher Shaekspeare :) ....

    "...thou doest protest too much..."
  • by elucido (870205) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:19PM (#13317093)
    Because people search google, an IM would be genius. People who search for the same thing could meet each other through google IM. Almost like how technorati and other sites do it, google could take it one step further. Imagine the waste IM client combined with the google search engine.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:19PM (#13317094)
    Interesting that MS has to take a lot of flack here for using its "unfair" financial advantage to buy out companies for their tech (drawing comparisons to a vampire) whereas it has been perfectly okay for Google to do the same.
    • by sethadam1 (530629) * <adam@f i r s t tube.com> on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:32PM (#13317144) Homepage
      There's a perfectly good reason for that. Google has not used their purchases to smash their competitors out of existence. Take for example, Picasa. Used, publicized, integrated, and yet not accompanied by a huge push to take over that sector of the market. Or how about Gmail - beta pretty much forever, and then when it become open, there's no push to steal Hotmail or Yahoo customers. How about Blogger? There are APIs all over the place.

      Google hasn't been "evil" with their purchases. In fact, pretty much everything they bought they starting giving away for free.

      • Ok, so Google is allowed to buy companies and then give the products away for free.

        And yet Microsoft giving away IE for free is different how? (well, because it came with windows).

        but seriously, I don't get it. Google can come into diverse markets and because of their money from advertising, just release free software (software which I might add isn't cross platform..just like MS!)
        • People here LOVE to fight, don't they?

          Google IS different, and you know it. When MS buys, they (historically) do so with the knowledge that they intend to do everything in their power to lock people in and make their way the standard. Then they close the APIs or change for access to them.

          Google has yet to show that at all. APIs are plentiful. The software is free and promotes choice. Google has embraced open standards (RSS/Atom/cross platform JS-AJAX), all while MS has built web pages that rely upon Ac
          • I'm not at all saying google and microsoft are comparable.

            But I am saying that this particular aspect of both companies is like the pot calling the kettle black. Both corporations buy other companies and release their tech for free, in order to eliminate competition.

            I'm not placing any moral value on either one.

            And incidentally, MS invented "AJAX" and has not said that IE7 will not feature improved CSS support. The BETA doesn't.
            • Both corporations buy other companies and release their tech for free, in order to eliminate competition.

              The motive is not proven for Google. It is, however, for Microsoft. You can argue all you want, but you cast Google into an unfair light solely because there exists a tried comparison to Microsoft - they are both big technology companies. Microsoft has a history of doing bad things to eliminate competition, like gaining market share and then changing standards to ensure, for example, websites will on
              • "Google has no such blackmarks in their permanent record."

                You guys aren't even looking for those blackmarks. Meanwhile, Microsoft accumulates the black marks basedly solely on "well that's probably what they're doing" sort of rationale.

                " but those who distrust Google do so because they are paranoid and fear what MIGHT happen. VAST differences, my friend."

                Vast differences in perception, yeah. You see, because it's assumed everything Microsoft does is an attempt to rule the world, every move they make can b
  • Jabber? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by vidarlo (134906) <vidarlo.bitsex@net> on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:24PM (#13317104) Homepage
    If I where google, I'd go for a solution based on Jabber, as this allows
    • Connectivity with other nets (MSN/AIM/Yahoo!)
    • Connectivity with other jabber users
    • Allows a p2p structure, which is cheap for google
    The fact that the technology is there, might be impotrant for google, since it is a solution that just has to be deployed. Only problem might be how servers cope when they get 100K users, and how google will ensure connectivity with MSN et al without being sued for something...
    • wow, wtf.

      Here are your recent submissions to Slashdot, and their status within the system:

      2005-08-10 14:30:01 Google IM Client, Revisited (Index,Google) (rejected)


      I linked to five or six articles, plus a past slashdot story, and a couple of them talked about Jabber, and being multi-protocol, and talked about p2p, and Apple. But this article? It links to some stupid blog.

      The editors can go fuck themselves, frankly.
    • Google can probably rely on mass media support.

      Can you immagine the headline from MSNBC competitors - "MSN cuts off users of Google's IM service from their friends!"

      They dont care when the protocol gets changed to stop a few users of Jabber or Gaim, but if it was Google getting disconnected it would be a Story (tm), and a PR nightmare for the IM service that tried it.
    • Why not Skype?
      License access to MSN, AIM/ICQ, and Yahoo! and extend the Skype client to support them.
      Put a tiny AdSense square at the bottom of every IM pane to pay the licensing costs.
      Voice chat (that includes SkypeOut) is ad-free.
  • Web-based client? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by helmetnerd (905678) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:31PM (#13317139)
    It doesn't have to be their own IM network. I could see Google coming out with a web-based IM client for an existing protocol, in line with their web-based desktop philosophy. I, for one, wouldn't mind seeing a nice lightweight AJAX-stylee IM client built into my google account for when im not at home.
  • by alphakappa (687189) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:33PM (#13317148) Homepage
    Where is the story about rumours that Google would buy Meetro... This looks like a way to get people to visit the meetro website.
  • by DoktorTomoe (643004) on Sunday August 14, 2005 @03:52PM (#13317225)

    GMail users are experiencing problems since friday if their adress consists of non-alphanumerical characters. While emails arrive at joesixpack@gmail.com, they do not arrive at joe.sixpack@gmail.com. Google claims to ignore these characters, and many people have choosen to give their adress to their contacts with points.

    Google has not yet responded to bug reports.

    I certainly hope this is a temporal problem and emails are not lost.

    • My Gmail account is labeled as "beta". I wonder if they all read this way...
    • My first response that you're wasting your time with a bug report posting in this thread. But then again, if they're not responding to the submitted reports, those guys are probably just reading /., so maybe you've got the right idea!
    • WHAT?

      Shit.

      Thanks. Glad I keep backups on another server!

      No, wait, I got mail two hours ago, and that's all that I'm expecting (checked against backup).

      Does this maybe only happen when you didn't sign up with the dots in your alias?

      > I certainly hope this is a temporal problem and emails are not lost.

      So, you think Google will time-travel to retrieve your lost e-mails? ;)
    • That'll teach you to entrust your e-mail to a beta service.
    • While emails arrive at joesixpack@gmail.com, they do not arrive at joe.sixpack@gmail.com.

      There was a bug in Gmail's account creation that let you create an account with dots in the name even if an account with the same name except without the dots already existed. This bug in account creation has been fixed. Invite yourself to a new account under a new name if you can.

  • right move (Score:2, Insightful)

    by rafi (55956)
    people are saying: "next IM? -no space on the net", but the same was with email - there were also thousends of mail providers before google and anyway google succeded!
  • Why not? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by t_allardyce (48447)
    Google could take IM any day, if they bought skype they wouldnt even need to do much re-branding!

    Im still waiting for google calendar, theres just no good calander/task program thats remote, syncable, and cross-platform, unless im missing something..
  • Meetro's key innovations. Their elevator statement is. Let's go into desperate internet cafes and ask them to setup 802.11b (hah 1!) and install Meetro clients (hah 2!) and get these internet cafes to register with Meetro their Geo-coded locations (hah 3!). The idea is if all three stages are done, the 30 people on Meetro can login at anytime and Meetro will automatically announce where you are to your friends. hah 1: Internet cafes aren't cool places where you bring your laptop and surf a little on 802.11
  • I went on the site of the mentionned company [meetro.com] and it features a flash movie stating it's an IM that connects you with other buddies geographically near you (like 0.25 mile) and with the same interests...

    If this was true, I think it could be very interesting: sometimes nice events happen in my neighborhood and I just miss them because I didn't know there was something happening... or those who don't know their neighbors? (disclosure: I know my neighbors!)

    An app allowing you to discover the life in your comm

  • Revenue Source? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by PR0UD_INFIDEL (853316)
    Most important for any service that Google provides that makes it out of beta is revenue generation. If it doesn't make money, there is no need to pour cash and brainpower in to develop it. So, how would Google make money? I see three posibilities. First would be to use the standard model of banner ads that infest the tops of AIM. Second would be to sell the product, like DeadAim http://www.jdennis.net/ [jdennis.net] or Trillian Pro http://www.ceruleanstudios.com/ [ceruleanstudios.com]. Both of these solutions are not typical of Google
  • Integrating a chat mode to gmail would be a nice way to go. I think people would love to just use their email account for messaging. and then have the conversations show up in gmail along with the rest of their emails. It solves the messaging problem and allows them to get a email client onto peoples computers. If they could do it through a web interface (not sure how that would work as far as socket connections) even better. no new client to install. just go to their website, log in and chat/email.
  • Though I agree that the IM client market is over-saturated I also feel that if Google were to take on a client for itself there would be something unique about it.

    This Meetro IM client ( http://www.meetro.com/ [meetro.com] does posess something that sets it apart from all of the other clients/metaclients: Location based contacts. If you are in Sandusky OH and want to meet up with other people who share the same interests as you do for a day at Cedar Point, go to a wi-fi connected spot in town and find someone local or
  • ...what's he supposed to say?
    • GMail prevents MSIE from remembering your password. GMail sucks.

      WTF? Organization asserts the right to not let buggy, easily compromised software remember login credentials for it's services. Organization shows it cares about security, therefor sucks? No wonder you're a Windows user...

    • Naw, people who had much contact with the night shift security desks at Oregon Health Sciences University about two years ago can verify I had been predicting a Jabber-based Google IM to eventually happen.
  • by Gamefreak99 (722148)
    That's a bunch of rubbish. Think of the millions of hits Google get's a day. Now, just pop a little thing on there saying "New! Google IM!" and boom: the majority of Slashdot and the internet tech crowd downloads it. It goes into the paper the next day generating more downloads. I don't think they would even need to do a gaim type thing and crossover to AIM and whatnot.

    Think of the possibilities though. The ability to google any text someone sends you. Online and offline chat (ala ICQ) via Gmail (maybe set
  • A messenger cliennt ( Jabber based, pleeeeease ) would enable Google to map out how people know other peoplee - much like they've been ablle to do by mmaking Gmmail invite onlyy.
    Yyes, I am suffering the ddoubble keypress in X.

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