I just read this post about the deal that eBay and Google signed which will also allow Google Talk and Skype to interoperate and possibly be able to communicate even via chats.
It them folloed by an enlightened moment (Ka ching!) where I thought of an idea that Google can use to deepen Google Talk`s penetration in the corporate environment.
Google Talk is based on the solid and open standards of XMPP (Jabber).
One of the advantages of the Jabber protocol is its locality. All chats performed in the same server stays on that server and will not take the long walk to some company`s chat server somewhere on the Internet (which is what happens with MSN Messenger, for example).
The main advantage of this for corporates is that all corporate talks all remain in the corporate`s network and servers and will never go out of the it (an IT manager`s dream ;-) ).
What some corporates do is deploy yet another IM service inside their corporate and what the users end up are a couple of IM software instances, one for corporate and one for the rest of the user`s chats (which is suppose to be only private chats, but usually end up with some business and work relates chats).
There are two major ideas I had that can be easily implemented in Google Talk to achieve this:
- Have Google Talk support an additional Jabber account. That account will be connected to a local corporate Jabber server (there are a lot of them). The Google Talk client will handle these two account separately and will send messages to contacts of the local corporate through the corporate account and not through Google Talk`s servers.
- Have Google release their Google Talk server as a corporate product. Certain Google Talk users will be marked as corporate users and all communication with them will be sent through the locally installed Google Talk server.
There are pros and cons for both approaches.
Approach #1 is easier to implement and will not require a lot of work on Google`s part to release their server as a product. The disadvantages are that the voice features of Google Talk might not be available and that people will still have 2 different contacts, corporate and non corporate.
Approach #2 is harder for Google to implement but brings a couple of interesting advantages, the first being that Google Talk voice abilities will probably work just fine. Corporate will not need to configure anything, it will all come in a box from Google (like their search appliance).
Both approaches are based on a Jabber server which can have gateways installed to all the different other protocols (including Yahoo, ICQ and MSN) which can make things a lot easier for corporate users. They will have one client that gives most of the features to all other clients and still be able to securely communicate with their corporate peers.
What do you think? Is Google going to do such a thing?